1922 ad in Ladies’ Home Journal

Advent is upon us, so I figured I’d go back to my practice of sharing holiday-themed words each Monday. I think I’ve used pretty much all of them at some point or another, but I’ll try to highlight ones I haven’t looked at in a while, at least! This one I originally shared in 2012. =) (And if there’s one you’re curious about and want me to look up, just let me know!)
remember, as a child, writing stories and assignments for school around
this time of year and occasionally using the abbreviation “X-mas” for
Christmas. I remember teachers telling me not to use abbreviations in my
assignments, and I remember someone else (can’t recall who) telling me
not to use that one for Christmas because it just wasn’t right to take
Christ out of Christmas (or something to that effect) and replace it
with an X.
in my middling years, I refused to use it, thinking it somehow mean to
Jesus…then later I actually learned where it came from. 
Pretty simple, really. The Greek word for Christ is Χριστός. You
might notice that first letter. Our X, though it’s the Greek “chi.” No
paganism here, no dark, dastardly scheming to remove Jesus from his
birthday. Scholars started this as a form of shorthand. The first
English use dates to 1755 in Bernard Ward’s History of St. Edmund’s College, Old Hall. Woodward, Byron, and Coleridge, to name a few, have used it to. And interestingly, similar abbreviations date way back. As early as 1100, the form “Xp̄es mæsse” for Christmas was used in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle.
It’s still an abbreviation and oughtn’t be used in formal writing and
more than w/ or b/c, but it’s also perfectly legitimate as what it is.
Always nice to discover something like that. =)

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