...from woodblock to spam!

With all these Christmas Greetings popping up in your inbox, do you ever consider their origins? Greetings cards as we now know them, started in the fourteenth century with beautiful woodblock printed New Year's cards from Germany.

Apart from the German origins, the modern Christmas card is quintessentially an English invention as the first real Christmas greeting cards were "Christmas Pieces" made by children in the early 18th century. (And a tradition still going today - as you can see from the two (of many!) from my two (now not so young!) boys!)

However, the origin of the first Christmas card as we know it today can be traced to a card printed in December 1843 at the request of Sir Henry Cole, the first director of The Victoria and Albert Museum. Sir Henry would hand write greetings to family and friends on paper decorated with Christmas themes, but Sir Henry felt this was most inefficient so he commissioned a Christmas card with a single message that could be sent to everyone.

The Words "A Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to You" were written on this card and so becoming the "standard' Christmas card message.

So on that note...


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