Hilmar's Christmas Quiz  Solutions!!



























































































No. 1 - What brought the Magi to the manger?

a) Gold

b) Gold and frankincense

c) Gold, frankincense, myrrh

d) Pampers!


"…and went into the house and saw the child with Mary his mother, and fell down and worshiped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.” Matthew's Gospel (2:11):



No. 2 - What song is the timeless success of the group Wham from 1984?

a) First Christmas

b) Second Christmas

c) Last Christmas

d) No Christmas at all!





No. 3 - What do you call the distribution of gifts at Christmas?

a) Donation

b) Secret Santa

c) Handing out of presents

d) Bonuses


Secret Santa = Yule, a pre-Christmas custom, each member of a group gets a little present by another one (Elf), originality before use value! Handing out of presents (gift-giving), tip for millionaires: "one knows the gift tax, but not a handing out of presents tax" http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Secret_Santa



No. 4 - What famous ballet is performed at Christmas?

a) Sleeping Beauty

b) The Nutcracker

c) Swan Lake

d) Jesus Christ Superstar


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Nutcracker,  http://www.nutcrackerballet.net/html/nutcracker_movie.html



No. 5 – Who brought the German tradition of the Christmas tree to England?

a) Martin Luther

b) Kaiser Wilhelm's wife

c) Queen Victoria's husband

d) Christopher Tannenbaum


Queen Victoria married Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha in 1840, one year later, Prince Albert ordered a German CHRISTMAS TREE (anagram: "RICHEST STREAM" :-) from Coburg to London.



No. 6 - Why are in Christmas scenes ox and ass at the manger?

a) Prophecy from the Old Testament

b) Did the shepherds to the stable

c) Added later

d) Idea of the Animal Protection Association in Bethlehem


Fulfillment of the statement of the Book of Isaiah (1, 3): "An ox knows [that] his master and the ass his master's crib: but Israel does not know, and my people's does not understand."



No. 7 - When is the Russian Orthodox Christmas?

a) On Dec. 25

b) On Dec. 26

c) On Jan. 7

d) Not at all


In Orthodox churches with the Julian calendar, the birthday celebration traditionally takes place on 7th January (13 days difference to Gregorian calendar); reform attempts resulted in variations.

First Christmas was as the 6 th  January, Epiphany (later various other days like 20th April, 20th May or 18th November). Following the celebration of the late Roman Mithras and Sol Invictus, on 25th December the church has made a substitution of the Roman sun god through Christ as the "Light of the World." The first calendar note of the birth of Jesus on the 25th December by copyist Furius Dionysius Filocalus in 354 (first Christmas in the year 336 in Rome!).

The written tradition as a Christian Christmas begins with a Christmas sermon of John Chrysostom on 25th December 386. Reasoning was that the conception could have happened exactly at the beginning of the year (then 25th March).

Christmas Eve since Boniface: Since the 24th December is the first day that is longer, the Germanic peoples celebrated the festival of the Solstice. Boniface wanted to use this and celebrated the birth of Jesus just on this date.




No. 8 - The Christmas story is told in the Gospel of ...

a) Matthew

b) Mark

c) Luke

d) Mary


a) Luke (Lk 2.1 LUT +2,3-21 LUT ) AND c) Matthew ( Mt 2.1 to 12)

The Gospel of Mary (Possibly Mary Magdalene) in the Apocrypha ~ 160 AD...



No. 9 - Where is Christmas Island located?

a) in the Atlantic

b) In the Indian Ocean

c) In the Pacific

d) In the Philippines


b) (The territory of ~) Christmas Island belongs to Australia in the Indian Ocean; AND

c) Kiritimati, formerly(!) Christmas Island: part of Kiribati of the Line Islands in the Central Pacific.



No. 10 - Why are rabbits, carp, goose, and turkey on the menu for Christmas dinner?

a) As Christian animals' symbol

b) As the four elements: fire, water, earth and air

c) As the Creation

d) Because they taste well


In spite of many legends (especially rabbit and fish are popular Christian symbol of Animals), simply a matter of taste!



No. 11 - Who composed the Christmas Oratorio?

a) Bach

b) Handel

c) Haydn

d) A. Nonymous


 THE Christmas Oratorio by Johann Sebastian Bach, 1734, according to Luke (Lk 2.1 LUT + 2,3-21 LUT ) and Matthew (Mt 2.1 to 12 EU. BWV 248, cycle 6 Cantatas for Soli, mixed choir and Orchestra. For the 6 Services between Christmas Day and Epiphany; first 1734/1735 in Nikolai Church and Thomas Church, Leipzig/Germany (Boys Choir); often during Advent season.



No. 12 - Who ordered the census, according to the tradition, so that Mary and Joseph were forced to travel to Bethlehem?

a) Pilate

b) Augustus

c) Herod

d) Nero


"Now in those days an order was published by Caesar Augustus that the whole world should be registered." Luke, 2, 1-20.



No. 13 - What does the X in X-mas mean?

a) Cross

b) Chi

c) X

d) Any


Chi is the first letter of the Greek alphabet: "Christos" = ΧΡΙΣΤΟΣ.



No. 14 - Where are the first Christmas songs played on the radio already long before December?

a) Tyrol

b) The Philippines

c) Hawaii

d) Neverland


The only Christian country in Asia (apart from East Timor): ~ 83 percent of the population (including my better half!) = Roman Catholic! The Philippines are familiar with the world's longest Christmas season: traditionally beginning with the 16th December.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christmas_worldwide#Philippines http://www.seasite.niu.edu/Tagalog/Cynthia/festivals/philippine_christmas.htm



No. 15 - In parts of India, what gets the head of household on Christmas morning, as a sign of devotion?

a) A lemon

b) A chili pepper

c) A tiger's tooth

d) A good hiding


... a lemon as a symbol of "worship" - wishing happiness and success, in some parts of India! "Gifts are exchanged, especially with children, and servants, except baksheesh, which means coins. In turn, servants present a lemon to the head of the household on Christmas morning, a symbol of high esteem, bearing wishes for a long life and prosperity." http://msc.edu.ph/wired/xmasworldtop.html



No. 16 - What are you supposed to do under the mistletoe?

a) Shake Hands

b) Kiss

c) Dance

d) Sleep





No. 17 - In 1223, who revived the Christmas story with living creatures?

a) Albertus Magnus

b) Thomas Aquinas

c) Francis of Assisi

d) Genghis Khan


Christmas 1223, in a cave in the middle of the forest Greccio, the events of Bethlehem were presented - with real people and animals. The child on a bed of straw in the manger - the poor audience understood, that Jesus was one of them. Francis was preaching that night; the traditional nativity scene spread throughout Europe.



No. 18 - Where does the Christmas Cactus primarily growth?

a) Europe

b) Asia

c) South America

d) Greenland


The genus Schlumbergera is common in the coastal mountains of Mata Atlântica (southeast Brazil).



No. 19 - What is now the country’s name, where St. Nicholas lived?

a) Israel

b) Greece

c) Turkey

d) Nic-aragua


Nikolaus von Myra * between 270 and 286 in Patara, 6th December 326, 345, 351 or 365, Greek Bishop of Myra in Lycia (Asia Minor), then part of the Roman and later the Byzantine Empire. Patron of merchants, sailors, students and children. Patara was a antique city on the Mediterranean coast Lycia in today's Turkey .



No. 20 - Where is the largest Christmas crib in the world situated?

a) Austria

b) Switzerland

c) USA

d) Vatican


Diorama Bethlehem, CH-8840 Einsiedeln: ~ 470 characters, 80 m² (!)




No. 21 – When were the first electric Christmas tree candles used?

a) 1845

b) 1895

c) 1945

d) never


Invention of Christmas Tree Lights by Edward Johnson in 1882. In 1895, President Grover Cleveland set up a lighted Christmas tree in the White House.




No. 22 - Where was the printed Christmas card invented?

a) England

b) Germany

c) USA

d) Morrowland


In December 1843 the illustrator Henry Cole commissioned John Callcott Horsley, to design a printed Christmas card ("Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to You!"). Horsley wrote a picture of a family gathering surrounded by branches and vines. Cole printed 1,000 hand-colored cards in his own lithographic printing office to one shilling. Later, as the first director of the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, he helped the Christmas card to break through by the Penny Post (invented 1840). The modern British Royal Mail annual prize for the best design of a Christmas card is a trophy - named Henry! (Günter Garbrecht)

1875, German immigrant Louis Prang published the first line of U.S. Christmas cards.




No. 23 - In the weeks before Christmas, the centrifugal casting process is used in the production of…?

a) Christmas tree stands

b) Fairy lights

c) Chocolate Santas

d) Hydroplaning


Chocolate Santa Clauses are produced as hollow chocolate figures in the centrifugal casting process.



No. 24 - What do you call Santa Claus in Luxembourg?

a) Klee's

b) Ruprecht

c) Nickel

d) Claus Trophob!


Klee's [Kleeschen" = "little Klee's"] [from Klaus] "Kleeschen ass de Lëtzebuerger Numm vum Hellegen Niklos" (Luxembourgish: "... as the Luxembourgian name of Santa Claus").



No. 25 - How many candles had the first Advent wreath?

a) None

b) So many candles that the Advent had days like.

c) 4

d) 23


Johann Hinrich Wichern (1808-1881), Hamburg Lutheran theologian, moved with children living in poverty, in a farmhouse, the Grey House. In 1839, he built from an old wagon wheel a wooden ring with 19 small red (for daily), and four large white candles (for Advent Sundays), so the children could count the days until Christmas. Incorrectly attributed to a poem by Matthias Claudius (1740-1815) (in fact by his great-grandson Hermann Claudius! (1878-1980). The season of Advent goes back to the 7th century. Between four and six Sundays in Advent in the (Western) Roman Church, four since Pope Gregory the Great.



No. 26 - Which sect forbids its members to celebrate Christmas?

a) Jehovah's Witnesses

b) Scientology “Church”

c) San Young Moon

d) Pirate Party





No. 27 - Which Archangel brought Mary the news that she would bear God's son?

a) Michael

b) Gabriel

c) Uriel

d) Ariel


Luke 1:26-38 (other versions(!!): Luke 1:26-38) Archangels Ariel



No. 28 – Who is not a member of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer's Team?

a) Dancer

b) Prancer

c) Romancer

d) Rudolph


 Blitzer, Rudolph, Comet, Cupid, Dancer, Dasher, Donner, Prancer, Vixan -




No. 29 - What Italian pirates stole in 1087?

a) ... the Remains of St. Nicholas

b) ... the Holy Grail

c) ... barrels of communion wine

d) ... the mind of Pope Victor III.


Sailors from Bari in Apulia seized the remains of the saint from his burial church in Myra, over the objections of the Orthodox monks. Returning to Bari, they brought the remains with them and cared for them. The remains arrived on 9 May 1087.

According to a local legend, some of his remains were brought by three pilgrims to a church in what is now Nikolausberg in the vicinity of the city of Göttingen, Germany, giving the church and village its name.

There is also a Venetian legend (preserved in the Morosini Chronicle) that most of the relics were actually taken to Venice (where a great church to St. Nicholas, the patron of sailors, was built on the Lido), only an arm being left at Bari. This tradition was overturned in the 1950s when a scientific investigation of the relics in Bari revealed a largely intact skeleton.

The bones are laid out in the Basilica of San Nicola (click!).



No. 30 - Who has written the song "From Heaven High I Come to You"?

a) Paul Gerhardt

b) J. W. von Goethe

c) Martin Luther

d) Neil Armstrong


Luther wrote This most famous of his songs in 1535, allegedly for his own children, with the melody of a familiar folk song (I come forth from foreign countries). First printed in 1539.

http://www.ekd.de/advent_dezember/musik/vom_himmel_hoch.html http://www.hymnsandcarolsofchristmas.com/Hymns_and_Carols/from_heaven_high_i_come_to_you.htm



No. 31 - The year Jesus is born is...

a) ... unknown

b) ... 4 BC

c) ... 7 BC

d) ... zero


According to Matthew, Jesus was born before the death of Herod the Great (4 BC); historians consider this to be credible → Hans Conzelmann: Geschichte des Urchristentums (History of early Christianity), Göttingen 1978, p. 18). Dunn, James DG (2003). Jesus Remembered. Eerdmans Publishing. p. 324. Most scholars generally assume a date of birth between 6 and 4 BC/BCE. [68] 

However, the common Gregorian calendar method for numbering years, in which the current year is 2011, is based on the decision of a monk Dionysius in the six century, to count the years from a point of reference (namely, Jesus’ birth) which he placed sometime between 2 BC/BCE and 1 AD/CE.[77] Although Christian feasts related to the Nativity have had specific dates (e.g. December 25 for Christmas) there is no historical evidence for the exact day or month of the birth of Jesus http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jesus



No. 32 - Santa Claus wears a red-white costume, because...

a) ... these are the colors of a bishop

b) ... of the logo of Coca Cola

c) ... these are the colors of love and purity

d) ... of the color of Ferrari


Not Coca Cola! (New York Times Nov. 27, 1927). Formerly known as Saint Nicholas - as a serious Bishop figure in robes in all different colors. He came to America as the Dutch Sinterklaas. In 1821, Clement C. Moore in his poem A Visit from St. Nicholas, described him for the first time as a small, cheerful chubby - but in elf size.

Oldest Santa Claus postcard in 1897 in Thuringia, Germany (Collector: Christl Hütten).



No. 33 - Who was NOT crowned on Christmas Day?

a) William the First of England (1066)

b) Stephen I the Saint (1000)

c) Edmund the Martyr (855)

d) Charlemagne (800)


Edmund was said to have been crowned by Bishop Humbert of Elmham on Christmas Day 855. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edmund_the_Martyr

Stephen I the Holy: 26th Dec., 1000 (or January 1001 or 17th August 1000). December 26 is also a holiday in Ligao City Albay and in Tuguegarao City, Philippines, which celebrates a fiesta in honour of St. Stephen Protomartyr, its patron saint.





No. 34 - In which movie did Bing Crosby sing "White Christmas" the first time?

a) Santa Claus

b) Holiday Inn

c) White Christmas

d) A Christmas Carol


In the musical Holiday Inn, this composition won the Academy Award for Best Original Song (1942). The version sung by Bing Crosby is assumed to be the best selling single ever. The morning after Berlin wrote the song in 1940 at the poolside (!), he told his secretary, "grave your pen and take down this song - I just wrote the best song I've ever written. Hell, I just wrote the best song that anybody's ever written!"



No. 35 - What is a good idea at Christmas?

a) To go to church

b) To celebrate the birth of Jesus

c) To eat cookies

d) To sleep late


b) is very good, but all answers earns a point here! :-) Nativity.



No. 36 - The ghosts in the movie A Christmas Carol are:

a) Christmas past

b) Christmas present

c) Christmas future

d) Jacob Marley


 After being warned by Marley's ghost to change his ways (so that he may avoid a miserable afterlife like him), Scrooge is visited by three additional ghosts... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Christmas_Carol



No. 37 – What are the first names of Santa Claus's wife and child?

a) Samantha & Christine Claus

b) Buddy & Carol Claus

c) Jessica Claus & Mini Claus

d) Claudette & Clausewitz


The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause (2006): "Carol suddenly announces that her package is coming. She gives birth to a baby named Buddy just two hours before Santa Claus has to leave to deliver the gifts. "


In Charlie Brown's Christmas Tales, writes Sally Santa Claus as "Samantha Claus" inadvertently(!) thinking Samantha Claus is Santa Claus's wife. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mrs._Claus

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1964) and Rudolph and Frosty's Christmas in July, Santa calls her "Jessica" at one point in the latter, implying some kind of shared continuity.




No. 38 – When was the Birth of the Lord celebrated in early Christianity?

a) Jan., 6

b) May, 20

c) Nov. 17 / 18

d) April, 19 / 20


All four! "Christmas Day": the 19th & cynically also 20th April ("Hitler's birthday"), 20th May and 17-18th November were mentioned as the presumed birthday. Hans Foerster, The celebration of the birth of Christ in the Old Church.



No. 39 - What is associated with "Christmas Eve" in the liturgical calendar?

a) Christmas (eve)

b) The Midnight Mass

c) Adam and Eve

d) Mister Sandman!


In the Liturgical Calendar Christmas Eve is also for the memory of Adam and Eve.



No. 40 - What is Jesus' maternal grandfather's name?

a) Joachim

b) Jacob

c) Eli

d) Little Joe

* Only for declared genealogists: the great-grandmother on his father’s side? 


a) In the Catholic and Orthodox tradition, Saint Joachim (Hebrew: Jehoiakim) is the husband of Anne [or Anna, from Hebrew Hannah חַנָּה, meaning favor or grace http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Anne] and father of the mother of Jesus. The apocryphal Proto-Evangelium of James gives the story of Saint Joachim and Saint Anne as the parents of Mary. Largely this is followed in the Catholic tradition - and in the Qur'an (Koran); → http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heli_(Bible)

The story of Joachim and Anne also comes from the apocryphal Gospel of James. Joachim is described as a rich and pious man who regularly donates to the poor. Since his wife is barren, Joachim went to the desert for 40 days. An Angel appeared to Anne and promised a child: “Anna, the Lord God heard your prayer, and you will conceive and give birth, and your offspring shall be spoken of in the whole inhabited world.”  http://www.sol.com.au/kor/21_01.htm. Anne and Joachim caressed each other in front of the entrance to the Temple in Jerusalem - the Golden Gate ... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Joachim


b) Jacob is true according to Matthew 1.16. Modern interpretation: Jacob is the father of another Joseph = Mary's father! http://www.bibelcenter.de/bibel/widerspruch/d-wds01.php, (but not according to Jewish interpretation:  http://www.maschiach.de/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=894&Itemid=39). An good overview also in http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genealogy_of_Jesus


c) Eli or Heli, according to Coptic interpreting (inventor of the heli-copter?! :-)), the father of its ("poor") stepfather: that of Joseph, Mary's husband, according to Luke 3:23. http://www.bibelcenter.de/bibel/widerspruch/d-wds01.php. So we discuss three grandfathers, two paternal ones, Jacob possibly in the maternal line!


d) As a young boy, Joachim was called Little Joe: this interpretation is given only by a radical sect at Lake Tahoe, where the Ponderosa Ranch was situated (until 2004), in the resort Incline Village.


* And the paternal great-grandmother? Here we leave the trivial part of Jesus' genealogy and we have to ask good old Sextus Julius Africanus: "... that there had been a levirate marriage and that Joseph's grandfather Mattan (descendant of Solomon) had had a wife called Esther [not recorded in the Bible] with whom he fathered Jacob [Joseph's father], but Matthan died and Esther married Heli's father Melchi [descendant of Nathan]. Then when Heli died childless [again not recorded in the Bible] Joseph's father Jacob took Heli's wife to raise up children for Heli and left Joseph adopted in Heli's widow's house. → Brown, R. E.: Birth of the Messiah see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heli_(Bible) Wow! :-)


 Merry Christmas! back to Christmas Quiz


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