This is Part V of my Victorian Christmas article series. Enjoy!
Toy theatres were a popular form of entertainment in Victorian times. Once made you could buy plays to put on - hundreds of popular West End plays were reproduced for toy theatres. This Pollock’s Toy Theatre is a genuine Victorian theatre complete with stage, scenery and characters.
While carols were not invented by the Victorians, it was a tradition that they actively revived. Some Victorians felt traditional Christmas carols were being forgotten so published books of popular carols. Many used the same words, but were put to new, livelier tunes. Most of the carols we know and sing today are these new Victorian songs.
Reading 'A Christmas Carol'
On cold winter nights in Victorian times, families would take their seats around the hearth for story-telling. Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol sums up what a Victorian Christmas meant with its themes of charity, family and goodwill to all men. It still has a lasting legacy in the sort of Christmases we celebrate today.
The Victorians made Christmas a festival for the family and children, and any gathering was a good excuse to play parlour games. These were a popular form of entertainment and guides on how to play were printed by the hundreds in the books and magazines of the period.
Part I of this article series - Victorian Christmas: Decorations
Part II of this article series - Victorian Christmas: Gifts
Part III of this article series - Victorian Christmas: Crafts
Part IV of this article series - Victorian Christmas: Food and Drink