N is for Nativity Plays – the history interpreter’s historical advent calendar and some gravestones

Today our project to index the gravestones in the local chuchyard bore fruit, as I was called across the road to guide some Australian vistors to their ancestors’ memorials. Bit jolly nippy for dashing round churchyards but at least it was sunny and dry.

Nativity Plays

Tradition believes that the first nativity play was performed in 1223, when St Francis of Assisi held the first service to use carols. Cribs were Christmas symbols before this time and were part of Italian C11th traditions. Even before this, Byzantine Churches are associated with what were described as Nativity Dramas, however these were oratorios rather than plays.

 

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