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Posted by Herper on December 18, 2002 at 01:16:04:
In Reply to: on the second day of christmas... posted by santaclaus on December 14, 2002 at 08:26:11:
:My true love gave to me
:two turtle doves
What in the world do leaping lords, French hens, swimming swans, and especially the partridge who won't come out of the pear tree have to do with Christmas?
From 1558 until 1829, Roman Catholics in England were not permitted to practice their faith openly. Someone during that era wrote this carol as a catechism song for young Catholics.
It has two levels of meaning: the surface meaning plus a hidden meaning known only to members of their church.
Each element in the carol has a code word for a religious reality which the children could remember.
The partridge in a pear tree was Jesus Christ.
Two turtle doves were the Old and New Testaments.