Yule - Viking Christmas

Yule - Noël Viking
This festival celebrates the coming of the sun: it is in fact on this date that the days begin to lengthen again, during the Winter Solstice. It is the longest night of the year, an event celebrated for millennia by many peoples.
On this occasion, the Vikings light log fires and celebrate the upcoming arrival of the sun. This celebration lasted several days, giving them the opportunity to exchange gifts, celebrate, sing, tell old stories and decorate Christmas trees.
Sagas tell that Heimdall, accompanied by the Aesir, returns to visit Jarl's children, leaving them a present in their stockings.

Christmas decoration

One of the Viking traditions that has remained until today is the decoration of a tree or houses. For Yule, the Vikings decorated evergreen trees with food, clothing, runes and carved statues, as well as colorful garlands. These are given as gifts to the spirits of the trees to encourage them to return for spring and make the trees grow which will then be used in boat construction.

Yule celebration

During Yule celebrations, peasants would visit the homes of the upper class and sing in exchange for gifts and treats. They also sang while dancing around stone circles or large outdoor fires. This joyful and sharing behavior was to bring fortune to the peasants and abundance in their next crops. So the gods brought their gratitude in spring, offering fertile lands.

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