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On the Last Day of Christmas

The once-unconventional idea that the Church placed Christmas near the winter solstice in order to substitute it for a pagan festival has long since become conventional wisdom, a way of belittling Christianity, at least, if not attacking it head-on. Well, it seems to be another bit of conventional wisdom that probably isn't true, according to this. There is a much more ancient tradition that Jesus was conceived on the same day of the year on which he was crucified, and that that date was March 25. So, nine months later...

(I know, the last day of Christmas is the 6th, and I'm posting this on the 5th, but I won't have time tomorrow.)


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Is today the last day of Christmas, or was it yesterday? That is, was Twelfth Night last night, or is it tonight? Is Epiphany part of Christmas, or does it come after Christmas?

I wonder how many ways I can ask the same question?

25,26,27,28,29,30,31,1,2,3,4,5: 12 days. And all these years I've been thinking Epiphany was the last day of Christmas.

I read that piece a while back. I thought the most interesting point was that, while the Donatists accepted Christmas, they rejected Epiphany as an innovation. (which indicates that Christmas predates the Donatist schism and thus predates Constantine).

Yes, Mac, that was my counting too, but then I confused: are Sundays counted as part of the 12 days of Christmas? They aren't counted in the 40 days of Lent.

This year there were two Sundays between Christmas (Day 1) and today, which, if they were not counted, would make the 12th day of Christmas tomorrow, so that cannot be right. So they must be counted, which means that last night was Twelfth Night. How did you spend it? I didn't do anything very festive.

Epiphany isn't one of the 12 days. Twelfth Night is the eve of Epiphany.


Surely Christmas goes for 40 days - until Candlemas!

Louise, always looking on the bright side!

Sorry I've been pretty much absent this week. First week back at work after the holidays has been difficult.

At least it's over!


Yes, hallelujah.

Sorry to threadjack but I have no idea where our comments about this were. It pertains to the relative sound quality of CDs, MP3s, etc. It's a few years old but still interesting.

Pardon the interruption. Now back to your regularly scheduled discussion...

Looks like you meant to include a link that isn't there. I ran across some interesting stuff on this topic recently, too, which I'll post...if I can find it again... it is:

Overall there's a good point there, but the technical details are somewhat off. In particular, mp3 and standard cd audio are very different things and the sample rates for each describe different things, so it's very misleading to compare them on that basis alone. And saying that the LP is superior in this respect is just meaningless--it's like saying that the gas mileage of your front porch is in the infinite domain.

But I do think the overall concern about declining sound quality is justified.

It just happens that I've been reading and occasionally participating in some extensive discussions about this wrt mp3 sound quality. One thing that seems clear is that even expert listeners can't consistently tell the difference between a high quality mp3 and a cd in a blind test. 90% of opinion on these things is not based on blind test, and really can't be trusted--the hear-what-you-expect-to-hear factor is just too powerful where subtle differences are concerned. I'll see if I still have the links.

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