A festive walk

edward-smIn 1551 the Holy Days and Fasting Act was passed – sadly it was repealed in 1969 – I think if I’ve read correctly- or else if you were thinking of attending church on Christmas Day you would have been required to walk there whatever rank in society you might hold.  And, if the law hadn’t been repealed there would have been no question of not going to church in any event. It was a legal requirement to attend a church service on Christmas Day – a protestant one (this was the reign of Edward VI) unless you were cooking the dinner in which case you weren’t obliged to go.

And whilst you are sampling the festive delights of a glass of sherry as you prepare the trifle you might like to consider the difficulties of whether or not a law remains repealed if the law that repealed a particular act is itself repealed. This is the case with the 1969 act that repealed the 1551 act…producing the kind of argument that can probably be likened to a dog chasing its own tail.


On the plus side (or not -as the case may be, depending on how you feel about it), so far as I’m aware, there are currently no Tudor laws which prohibit the wearing of festive sweaters, hats, earrings or other accoutrements.

One thought on “A festive walk

  1. That is interesting. I was brought up not knowing about law on church visits.I became an altar boy aged 7. My father told me that I should attend all services but to make my own mind up on religious matters when I grew up. Now I view religion as poison and only God exists without the trappings of man who knows no more than I yet preaches to us to make me laugh at his stupidity. I saw not the repeal in 69 as we did not care having our own private chapel at home. Any way it being Christmas morn one must start the cooking.Happy Christmas for 2015.

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