Christmas is also commonly referred to as Xmas. Some people are against the idea of referring to Christmas as ‘Xmas’.
According to them, referring to Christmas as Xmas takes the ‘Christ’ out of Christmas, and they believe that Christmas is derived from Christ-mass.
Christ-mass is a church service celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ.
However, that is not correct! In the Greek alphabet and language, the letter that resembles X is the letter, Chi.
It is the first letter in the Greek word for Christ, which is Christos.
The first two letters of Christos were used by the early church to create a symbol that represented the name of Jesus.
The symbol (monogram) resembles an X with a small p attached on the top:
Christians also sometimes use the symbol of a fish.
This is derived from the period when the pioneers Christians had to hold their meetings in secrecy, owing to the fact that the Romans wanted to kill the Christians.
This was before the shifting of Emperor Constantine to Christianity.
Also, it is stated in the bible that Jesus said that he wanted to make his disciples “Fishers of Men,” prompting the use of the fish symbol.
During the early days of Christianity, when two Christians would meet, one would draw using their feet a half-fish shape on the ground, and the other would complete the remaining half.
Fish in Greek is known as ‘Ikthus’ or ‘Ichthys.’ The words contain five Greek letters.
The words can also generate a sentence typical in Christian beliefs’ Ie-sous Christos ‘Theou Huios So-te-r’ which is translated as “Jesus Christ, son of God our Saviour” in English.
X or Christos is the second letter of those five letters.
Therefore, Xmas can also be used to mean Christmas. However, it should be pronounced as ‘Christmas’ and not ‘ex-mas.’
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Main Points About Xmas vs Christmas
- The term Christmas is a blend of two words; ‘Christ’ (as in Jesus Christ) and ‘Mass’ (as in celebration of the Eucharist or just celebration).
- The term could be roughly translated to mean the celebration of Jesus Christ.
- Many people believe that ‘X’ in Xmas is considered an attempt to remove Christ from the word Christmas, hence, it is seen as blasphemous.
- ‘X’ is the Greek symbol of the letter ‘chi’. And ‘chi’ is the first letter in the Greek word for Christ. The old Christians used ‘X’ as a secret symbol to show their membership to the church.
- Xmas and Christmas mean the same thing; however, it should rather be pronounced as Christmas.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) About Xmas vs Christmas
- How did Christmas become Xmas?
In the initial days, Christians used the symbol X to secretly represent their identity in the church. The letter X also means Christ in the Greek language and also represents Chi.
- Is Xmas sacrilegious?
Christmas eve is a tradition which is celebrated worldwide. In the initial times, it was celebrated only by the Christian community. But now it is celebrated by people from all religions. People believe that Xmas is not very religious and is not the same as merry Christmas. The letter X means Christ in the Greek language. So Xmas is not sacrilegious.
- Is it OK to say Xmas?
Yes, it is OK to say Xmas instead of Merry Christmas. The term Xmas also means the same meaning which Merry Christmas conveys. It is used to greet someone on the eve of Christmas and Express gratitude and love.
- Who started Xmas instead of Christmas?
Christmas eve is a tradition which is celebrated worldwide. In the initial times, it was celebrated only by the Christian community. But now it is celebrated by people from all religions. The word Xmas was first used in the year 1501. The letter X here means chi or energy. In the initial days, the people used the letter x as their identity for entering into a church.
I meat so many people while traveling or on the internet who think that Xmas is a convenient form of Christmas. Thet get amazed when I tell them the same facts as I shared in the above article.
So now you also know why Christmas is also known as Xmas so you can tell others about the significance of Xmas.
Word Cloud for Xmas vs Christmas
The following is a collection of the most used terms in this article on Xmas vs Christmas. This should help in recalling related terms as used in this article at a later stage for you.