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05 December 2019The Twelve Days of Christmas
07 November 2019Goya's Painting the 3rd. of May 1808
03 October 2019That Woman or the Duchess of Style - Time to reassess Wallis Simpson
05 September 2019The life and painting of Samuel Lucas. AFTERNOON ONLY - No visitors
05 September 2019The Power of Jewellery: Adornment and ritual from prehistory to the present. MORNING ONLY - No visitors
08 August 2019The Dead Sea Scrolls in Context -an introduction to Palestine in the Time of Christ
04 July 2019Frank Thrower and Dartington Glass
06 June 2019Gustav Klimt: Imperial Muralist turned Radical Painter
02 May 2019Churchill - the Artist
07 March 2019Go with the Flow - Art Nouveau (c1890 - 1920)
07 February 2019American Realism in the 30s and 40s
06 December 2018Step into the Christmas Card
01 November 2018Poetry,Music and Art, Wilfred Owen and his Contemporaries, (the 100th. Anniversary of the End of World War 1)

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The Twelve Days of Christmas Peter Medhurst Thursday 05 December 2019

The celebration of the period following Christmas can be traced back several millennia, and to at least two cultures - neither of them Christian. One of them is the southern Roman Feast of Kalends on the 1st January, and the other, the northern Nordic festivals of Yuletide surrounding the celebrations of the Winter solstice. However, it was Pope Julius I who decided to subvert the gluttony, drunkenness and sun worship to Christian purpose, and by choosing the 25th December to celebrate the birth of Christ, he neatly bridged these cultures and paved the way for Future Christmas festivities. And so it is that many of our modern Christmas customs and carols bear references to traditions that have nothing to do with the birth of Christ. Nonetheless, each year, Christ’s birthday on 25th December signifies the beginning of twelve festive days of celebrations and music making. In this lecture-recital Peter Medhurst explores the wealth of Christmas music, traditions and curious legends that are connected with them. Music performed includes: Deck the Halls with Boughs of Holly, the Coventry Carol, The Twelve Days of Christmas, the Wassail Song, The Three Kings - Cornelius.