Christmases before and after
Language Resources

Spanish Christmases before and after

Us Spaniards may be friendly, welcoming and nice… but we are also quite nostalgic. One of our language’s earliest writers, Jorge Manrique, once said: “Any time in the past was better”.

Or not? Were Spanish Christmases better in the past? We are going to do a test. We asked our readers what comes to mind when they hear "Christmas" and we took their main answers to compare and vote. The results are as follows:

    Three Kings’
  • Presents: in the past presents were only given on Three Kings’ Day which was celebrated one or two days before returning to work. Now we have double the gifts because we give the important gifts on Christmas Day and small gifts on Three Kings’Day. One point for the modern Christmas, although this may change due to the crisis.
  • Food: Christmas dinners in the past were more copious and nowadays they are lighter. However it is also true that in the past a family could only afford turkey, seafood or lamb once a year. It is a bit complicated to decide the winner on this one, so we leave it in the air.
  • Sweets and Turron: In the olden days there was only hard turron from Alicante or soft turron from Jijona. Now, there are many flavors available and we have even started seeing specialties from other countries such as Italian panettone or Advent calendars with chocolates. This point goes to the modern Christmas.
  • Television: in the past you could only want two channels and now there are many. Although in many cases the same singers and comedians appear on different shows. That means that now we can dedicate more time to talking or having fun. Although the truth is that before we never paid much attention to the TV. in the background anyways; so this vote is a tie.
  • Christmas lights: always such a nice sight, but a curious debate comes up about them. Some people say they are traditional because they represent candles, stars or snowflakes; while others argue that modern lights are artistic, abstract and do not represent anything. For this point we are leaning towards the winner being the traditional Christmas, because it reminds us of when we were young.
  • Home decorations: In the past everything was really colorful and endearing; they were not all perfect and measured. The tree leaned, the nativity scenes were made up of figures of all different sizes and tinsel was hung everywhere. Today people decorate less, but the decorations are better thought-out and stylish. Despite all the good memories, this point goes to the modern Christmas.

The votes are 3 in favor of the modern Christmas, one in favor of the traditional, one tie and one undecided. What does all this mean? That there are still people who prefer a traditional Christmas so many homes maintain old traditions. So, if you come then you can experience examples of both the old and the new so that you can decide for yourselves which one you prefer more!