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Christmas: a 12-day holiday

Christmas: a 12-day holiday

12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS: The celebration sometimes lasts for more than one day. Photo: clipart.com

In America, most people celebrate Christmas with an exchange of gifts on Christmas Day.

But elsewhere, others take a little longer to do their celebrating.

While times have changed somewhat, Christmas traditionally has been celebrated as a 12-day holiday.

The holiday period would begin at midnight Christmas morning and extend through the Feast of the Epiphany, Jan. 6.

Actually, if you include the feast day, it would be a 13-day, 12-night holiday, with the Feast of the Epiphany long referred to as Twelfth Night.

At any rate, Twelfth Night is recognized as the time the Wise Men reached the baby Jesus and brought him gifts.

Because of that, many people exchange their presents at the end of the Christmas period, rather than at the beginning.

Others do so throughout the 12 days.

And it’s customary for some revelers to leave their Christmas decorations in place the entire holiday.

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In this photo released by Fox, Homer explains why he wants to bring back the annual 4th of July fireworks display, after it's cancelled for budget reasons, in the "Yellow Badge of Cowardge" Season Finale episode of "The Simpsons," in May 2014. The full 25-year run of "The Simpsons" will arrive on cable channel FXX with a summer marathon, to be paired this fall with a digital extravaganza that could turn other TV shows yellow with envy. "I'm not going to over-promise, but I think this website will provide you with affordable health care," longtime "Simpsons" executive producer Al Jean told a TV critics' meeting Monday, July 21, 2014.

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