What Is Boxing Day?
What is Boxing Day and why do we celebrate it?
22:19 23 December 2015
Boxing Day is the day after Christmas and is a national holiday in the UK and Ireland. As December 26 is also the feast of day of Saint Stephen, the patron saint of horses, Boxing Day is also associated with fox hunting and horse racing.
The term Boxing Day originated from the Victorian era when churches often displayed a box where their parishioners put donations. Also, December 26 in Britain is when the servants of the wealthy were given time off to visit their families so they can observe the holiday. Each is given a box to take home containing gifts, bonuses, and sometimes leftover food.
Aside from the United Kingdom, Boxing Day is also observed in Canada, Australia, Hong Kong, New Zealand, South Africa, and some other Commonwealth nations.
Boxing Day was a day on which families continued their Christmas celebration. However, it has now turned into a holy day of consumerism. The sales used to start in January post-New Year. However, many shoppers are looking for great deals while shops are looking for ways to off-load stocks.
Also, in recent times, Boxing Day has become synonymous with many sports, particularly horse racing.