If you have been brought up in an English speaking country, then the chances are that you would be very familiar with the bank holiday - Boxing Day. However, how many of us actually know what Boxing Day represents or the history behind it.
Well, Boxing Day is traditionally the day after Christmas day when wealthy people in the United Kingdom would give a box containing a gift to their servants. Today, Boxing Day is better known as a bank or public holiday that occurs on December 26 - as it does in the United Kingdon, or the first or second weekday after Christmas Day, depending on national or regional laws of the country in which it is being celebrated. It is observed in this tradition in the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand.
In South Africa, Boxing Day was renamed Day of Goodwill in 1994. In Ireland it is recognized as St. Stephen's Day (Irish: Lá Fhéile Stiofáin) or the Day of the Wren (Irish: Lá an Dreoilín). In the Netherlands, Lithuania, Austria, Germany, Scandinavia and Poland, December 26 is celebrated as the Second Christmas Day.
In Canada, Boxing Day takes place on December 26th and is a federal public holiday. In Ontario, Boxing Day is a statutory holiday where all full-time workers receive time off with pay.
Where does the term Boxing Day come from?
Even today, it is still an accepted tradition in England for dustman and paperboys/girls to knock on the doors of their 'customers' to ask for and collect their 'Christmas Box'.
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Based on an article by http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boxing_Day