The Historical Tradition of the Yule Log
Posted on December 01 2022
The tale of the Christmas Yule log was born in the faraway lands of Norway. Deriving from the Norse word, “Hweol,” meaning wheel, the Norse people would use the Yule log to celebrate the sun’s return during the winter solstice. As a longtime Nordic tradition, the Norse people were firm believers in the idea that the sun was a gigantic wheel made of fire that vacillated between the outerworld and the earth’s atmosphere.
Long ago, the Yule log was once made up of the entire tree that was brought into the Norseman’s homes. The log would go into the fire hearth and expand into the main room. The log would continue to be burned throughout the 12 days of Christmas and the remains of the year’s past log would be used as well. Ironically enough, the log is then placed underneath a bed for luck and for protection against lightning and fire.
These days, Yule logs are incorporated into general Christmas themed items such as various deserts, puddings - and floral arrangements! Yule logs are generally created early to be made into a centerpiece for an altar or as decoration for the mantle over the fireplace until the night of winter solstice. They are usually adorned with seasonal blooms and assorted greenery.