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Davos in winter

Literary quotes - Christmas


Glad Christmas comes, and every hearth

Makes room to give him welcome now,

E’en want will dry its tears in mirth,

And crown him with a holly bough


From: John Clare, ‘December’, The Shepherd’s Calendar, with Village Stories and Other Poems, 1827


I heard the bells on Christmas Day
Their old, familiar carols play,
   And wild and sweet
   The words repeat
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

From: Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Christmas Bells. Written 1864; published 1865, Our Young Folks: an Illustrated Magazine for Boys and Girls



In the meantime the woman sang snatches of the beautiful hymn, very common in Spain, which commences thus:—


“Once of old upon a mountain, shepherds overcome with sleep,

Near to Bethlem’s holy tower, kept at dead of night their sheep;

Round about the trunk they nodded of a huge ignited oak,

Whence the crackling flame ascending bright and clear the darkness broke.”

From: George Borrow, The opening of Chapter IV of The Bible in Spain, 1843


How many old recollections and how many dormant sympathies does Christmas-time awaken.

From: Charles Dickens, The Pickwick Papers, 1837 (Book format)



Of all the old festivals, however, that of Christmas awakens the strongest and most heartfelt associations. There is a tone of solemn and sacred feeling that blends with our conviviality and lifts the spirit to a state of hallowed and elevated enjoyment. The services of the Church about this season are extremely tender and inspiring.

Washington Irving, The Sketchbook of Geoffrey Crayon, 1819

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