Noteworthy Events That Happened On Christmas Day

For assorted Free Christmas Printables, books, gifts, and other free printable items, visit any of the links shown below. 

Or read on for Chapter Three of a unique and colorful approach to Christmas past. 

Additional chapters are linked at the bottom of the text. 

These Free Christmas Printables can put you in the mood for holiday cheer, any time of year! 


by Judee Shipman


1505 – Christine of Saxony is born in Dresden.

1507 – France forms a military alliance with Venice and the Papal states.

1509 – Birth of Jane Wild, heiress of Kent.

1510 – Sicilians receive a Royal message regarding the Spanish Inquisition.

1512 – San Juan celebrates the arrival of Alonso Manso, the island's first Bishop.

1513 – A scholar named Johann Froben becomes leader of the Amerbach Press in Basel, despite being largely illiterate in Latin.

1514 – Mecklenburg annexes Bremen.

1515 – Wolsey is appointed Lord Chancellor.

1517 – Bandinello Sauli is restored by the new Pope to his previous role as Cardinal, after being deposed and imprisoned by the previous Pope.

1519 – The Bishop of Mileto celebrates his first mass.

1520 – Martin Luther, a German monk, publicly burns a papal edict demanding he recant his statements.

1521 – The forces of Francisco Orozco arrive in Oaxaca.

1522 – The first documented slave rebellion is led by men from Senegal.

1524 – Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama is killed by Indians and Muslims seeking revenge against Portuguese sailors. 

ABOVE: A portrait of Vasco da Gama    


1525 – Martin Luther performs the first German mass.

1527 – Theologian Giovanni Lorenzo Patarini is born on this day in Piacenza, Italy.

1530 – Death of Babur, Emperor of Delhi.

1531 – Martin Luther delivers a Christmas sermon entitled, “To Us A Child Is Born.”

1534 – Gil Vincente, a Portuguese poet, stages a production of Evora.

1535 – Articles written on this day set the terms for Anglo-Lutheran unity.

1538 – Saint Ignatius of Loyola conducts his first mass at Santa Maria Maggiore Basilica.

1539 – An expedition arrives in present-day Tallahassee, Florida, and holds the first Christmas celebration in North America.

1540 – Viceroy Don Antonio de Mendoza arrives in a Mexican city to stop Indian uprisings, and renames the city Navidad.

1553 – In the battle of Tucapel, Mapuche rebels under Lautaro, defeats the Spanish Conquistadors, and executes Chilean Governor Pedro de Valdivia.

1559 – Pope Pius V succeeds Pope Paul IV, thus becoming the 224 th Pope.

1560 – Scotland holds its first yuletide celebration following the Reformation.

1561 – Ambrose Dudley becomes the 3rd Earl of Warwick. 

1562 – Angel Day, an Elizabethan scholar later known for a work called The English Secretary, is apprenticed to stationer Thomas Druxell.

1564 – Birth of Johannes Buxtorf, author of de Synagoga Judaica.

Also born on this Christmas day is Nicolaus Mulerius, a professor of Medicine and Mathematics.

1565 – Phillippe de Chabot marries Catherine of Sicily. Together they will have seven children.

1566 – The Grand Duchess of Lithuania marries the Duke of Livonia.

1572 – Death of Peter Melius Juhasz, a renowned Hungarian botanist.

1581 – Death of Jacques de Billy de Prunay, a French Benedictine Abbot. That same day, a solar eclipse occurred at 8:35pm.

1582 – Some European provinces adopt the Georgian calendar on this Christmas Day. When they fell asleep on Christmas Eve, it was December 14 th . They awoke the following morning on December 25 th .

ABOVE: A Julian-to-Gregorian calendar page.    


1583 – Birth of English composer Orlando Gibbons. He dies at age 41.

1584 – Birth of Margaret of Austria, future Queen of Spain. She dies in 1611 at the age of 26.

1589 – The Monks of the Pechenga Monastery are massacred by Swedes during the Russo-Swedish war.

1599 – The city of Natal, Brazil is founded. "Natal" is the Portuguese word for Christmas. 

ABOVE: A snorkeler in the crystal blue waters of Natal.


1616 – In England, “Father Christmas” appears as the main character in a play by Ben Johnson called “Christmas: His Masque.”

Meanwhile, in Germany, a poet named Christian Hoffmann von Hoffmannswaldau is born.

1617 – Birth of French noble and army commander Jean de ColignySeligny.

1621 – Governor William Bradford of Plymouth forbids game playing.

1624 – Birth of German writer Angelus Silesius.

1628 – Birth of Noel Coypel, a French painter known for depicting epic Christian themes.

Above: Jesus born in a manger, by Noel Coypel.   


1630 – Battle of Marwitz.

1634 – Death of Lettice Knollys, an English noblewoman.

1635 – Death of Samuel de Champlain, the French explorer who founded Quebec.

1638 – Birth of Michel Begon, a French political official.

1640 – Birth of Julius Micrander, Swedish professor at Uppsala University, and also a member of Parliament.

1642 – Isaac Newton is born in Woolsthorpe-by-Colsterworth, England. He becomes a world renowned physicist, mathematician and astronomer, famous for his study of gravitational force and the Laws of Motion.

ABOVE: A rendering of Isaac Newton, by Jean Leon Huens

image credit:

1643 – Captain William Mynors finds an island, claims it, and names it Christmas Island.

1644 – Birth of Scottish nobleman Walter Scott, Earl of Tarras.

1645 – Oliver Cromwell and his Puritan forces take over England and cancel all Christmas celebrations.

Above: Portrait of Oliver Cromwell

image credit: 

1650 – Birth of Claude Aveneu, a French missionary.

Also on this day, Thomas Cooper is hanged as a Royalist rebel.

1651 – Birth of Pedro Manuel Colon de Portugal, a Spanish nobleman.

1652 – Birth of Archibald Pitcairn, a Scottish physician.

1658 – The Battle of Kolding, Denmark occurs on Christmas day. The Polish-Danish army defeats the Swedish army.

1659 – The Massachusetts General Court orders a fine of five schillings for “observing any such day as Christmas.” 

1660 – Birth of Charles Somerset of Worcestershire, an English politician who is the second son of the 1 st Duke of Beaufort. He predeceases his father at age 37.

1664 – Death of Niccolo Ludovisi, Prince of Piombino.

1665 – Birth of Lady Grizel Baillie, a Scottish songwriter.

1667 – Birth of Ehrengard Melusine von der Schulenburg, Duchess of Kendal and Munster.

1674 – Birth of Thomas Halyburton, a Scotish theologian. He dies at age 38.

1676 – Death of Matthew Hale, Lord Chief Justice of England.

Also dying on this day is William Cavendish, 1 st Duke of Newcastle on Tyne. Cavendish was also a soldier, politician, and writer.

1681 – Christmas celebrations are reinstated in Boston. 

Above: Christmas in Boston today. 

image credit:

1683 – Spain declares war on France.

Also on this day is the death of Kara Mustafa Pasha, an Ottoman General.

1686 – Italian violinist and composer Giovanni Battista Somis is born.

1696 – Birth of Prince Johann Ernst of Saxe-Weimar. He becomes a composer whose music is arranged by Johann Sebastian Bach. Despite his lofty financial status, Johann Ernst dies of an infection at the age of 18.

1699 – A French Missionary near present-day Memphis, Tennessee feels an earthquake along the Mississippi River. His journal entry regarding this event is America's earliest known written record of an earthquake.

YULE LOG: Additional Chapters

Yule log - Introduction

Yule Log - Chapter One

Yule Log - Chapter Two

Yule Log - Chapter Three

Yule Log - Chapter Four

Yule Log - Chapter Five

Yule Log - Chapter Six

Yule Log - Chapter Seven

Yule Log - Chapter Eight

Yule Log - Chapter Nine

Yule Log - Chapter Ten

More Free Christmas Printables And Related Links

Free Christmas Printables And Gifts 

Christmas Printables: Coloring Pages

Christmas Printables: Snow Scenes

Snow Sculpture Competition Winners

Worst Christmas Gifts Ever! 


Crazy Horse Appearing - Introduction

Crazy Horse Appearing - Chapter 1 

Crazy Horse Appearing - Chapter 2

Crazy Horse Appearing - Chapter 3

Crazy Horse Appearing - Chapter 4

Crazy Horse Appearing - Chapter 5

Crazy Horse Appearing - Chapter 6

Crazy Horse Appearing - Chapter 7

Crazy Horse Appearing - Chapter 8

Crazy Horse Appearing - Chapter 9

Crazy Horse Appearing - Chapter 10

Crazy Horse Appearing - Appendixes

What Is A Novel?

Here are some Classic Short Stories from the public domain:

Told in the Drooling Ward, by Jack London

The Ransom of Red Chief, by O. Henry

The Tale of Peter Rabbit, by Beatrix Potter

Go here for selected Moral Stories.  

See this page for Aesop's Fables, other short stories, printable poems, and more.

Click this link to learn Why Reading Is Important


Look Here Right Now To See A Long Lost Portrait Of Emily Dickinson! 

free christmas printables free christmas printables free christmas printables free christmas printables free christmas printables free christmas printables free christmas printables