Among the Anglicans in Colonial days, Twelfth Night ( January 6) or Epiphany also known as Boxing Day, was more important than Christmas. This was the traditional date of the arrival of the magi and was celebrated by giving presents, usually a new piece of clothing or money (in a box, hence the name) to the servants, and other relatively minor gifts among the family.
It was primarily a day for weddings, dancing and other merrymaking. A heavy Twelfth cake was baked with a coin in it. The finder was assured luck in the coming year. Catholics and Anglicans kept a formal liturgical calendar and noted saints’ days appropriate for their faith.” (From A Writer’s Guide to Everyday Life in Colonial America by Dale Taylor)
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