WHO PUT THE "X"
In recent years, many retailers have come under fire
for using the word "Xmas" as a substitute for Christmas.
Some businesses in the past routinely used Xmas
in their advertising and signage, shortening the word Christmas.
"We simply ran out of room in the ad," some would say.
But increased criticism from the public
for "taking the Christ out of Christmas"
has greatly curtailed this shorthand expression.
"Xmas" is rarely seen these days.
Interestingly, substituting the letter "X"
in Christmas dates back centuries (as late as the 1900s)
and we find the term "Xmas" had no negative connotations.
Theologians and historians acknowledge
there's nothing nefarious about the "X" in Xmas.
Its origins involve the first letter of the Greek name for Christ.
(Christos is the New Testament Greek word for Christ.)
The first letter of the Greek word Christos
is transliterated into our alphabet as an "X."
And that "X" has come through church history
to be a shorthand symbol for the name of Christ.
So whether you see Xmas or Christmas,
have a merry one, OK?
(Images photographed at Steeleville Antiques, Steeleville, Missouri.)