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Learn Unique Words that Portray Christmas Traditions

Regardless of how there are different words for Christmas, the meaning is not lost to the nations. As it is that time of year, we are pleased to show you 10 unique Christmas words in different languages that show Christmas traditions.

Moses Famuyiwa
Moses Famuyiwa

Christmas will be bland without Christmas traditions. The food, lights, mistletoe, boughs of holly, and decorations all over the house and neighborhood make the season one to look forward to and the most memorable.

Regardless of how there are different words for Christmas, the meaning is not lost to the nations. As it is that time of year, we are pleased to show you 10 unique Christmas words in different languages that show Christmas traditions.

Ten Words You Never Knew That Show Christmas Traditions

1.   Vigilia di Natale (Italian)

These words for Christmas mean “Christmas Eve”—the day before Christmas. This must be the most important day of the festivities because everybody comes together to prepare for the feast.

For some people, Christmas Eve is the day to go on an outing with family or friends, see a movie, and prepare for the feast and the guest coming in on Christmas day. And for others, it may be a religious activity at church to celebrate the occasion.

2.   La Befana (Italian)

There is a tradition of Santa Claus in different languages. Here, this tradition tells about an old lady who comes to bring sweets to little children on the 6th of January.

Rumor has it that she gives the good kids sweets, and the bad, misbehaved ones get nothing but coal in their socks.

3.   Albero Di Natale (Italian)

What is Christmas without a tree? At Christmas, a Christmas tree, in its full glory, decorated with lights and ornaments, brightens any room up and spreads Christmas cheer.

4.   El Gordo (Spanish)

This is another different word for Christmas which translates to The Fat Lottery. As the name implies, this Spanish tradition is based on playing the lottery. At Christmas, the Spanish government organizes a nationwide lottery with honeypot cash prizes going over 2 billion euros. And because many people participate in this lottery, it has become one of Spain's biggest events of the year.

5.   El Arrastre (Spanish)

Popular in the coastal city of Cádiz and is held on the 5th of January. This tradition translates to English as the “Drag” and is celebrated by children tying strings to empty cans and making a lot of noise all over town. This is to remind the kings (for Spaniards, the kings are the three wise men) to leave gifts for the children when they pass at night.

There is also a myth that the noise will scare away the giant. This giant ties to cover the sky with smoke so the kings can’t deliver presents. This ruckus will chase the giants away and secure gifts for the children.

6.   Dia de Los Santos Inocentes (Spanish)

Think about April fool’s day; Dia de Los Santos Inocentes is just that in Spain. The only difference is that instead of being celebrated on the 1st of April, Dia de Los Santos Inocentes is done on the 28th of December. It is a day for children to dress up in costumes and pull pranks on each other.

7.     Carols

Carols are universal in any language. Being Christmas, it is only normal for families to sing songs to celebrate the season. And it doesn’t matter where one is; carols are sung in any language.

8.   Nativity Plays

Plays bring stories to life, and they are more treasured during the Christmas season. Nativity plays help re-live the birth of Jesus Christ in our modern day. These plays are most common in schools before the Christmas holidays and in churches on Christmas day itself.

9.   Santa Claus

There is Santa Claus in different languages. He is Saint Nicolas, a jolly old man dressed in a red suit leaving gifts for kids under the Christmas tree and spreading Christmas cheer around the world.

He is also known as Father Christmas and can keep track of the behavior of every child in the world.

The children who have been good all year round get the gifts they write to Santa about. At the same time, the bad kids get coal under their Christmas tree.

10. Sternsinger (German)

Among the German Christmas words is the tradition of star singers. In this tradition, children dress up as the Three Wise Men bearing gifts of frankincense, gold, and myrrh and visit houses in their neighborhood carrying a star on a rod.


It is that time of the year when the snow falls, and it signifies one thing; Christmas. The jolly and cheer that accompanies the season are not foreign to anyone as it is shared worldwide.

It is a time to sit back, relax and make merry with family, friends, and neighbors, spreading joy and holiday cheer. These traditions make Christmas the special and most anticipated holiday of the year.

Language Learning

Moses Famuyiwa

Hello! I am Moses, an expert content writer, editor, and copywriter. I have a Master's degree in journalism, media studies, and communication. I enjoy creating content.

Milena Lazova

I'm an ESL teacher with over 7 years of experience in providing original content. I really like writing educational articles which may help others learn some aspects of English.

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