The story behind Frosty and all other snowmen.
Frosty the Snowman is a Christmas icon that many of us have come to know and love, the song has made its way into many of our beloved memories and sets the tone for what is one of the most joyful occasions of the year. Yet some of you may be wondering where the tradition or rather our love affair with snowmen came about, well we at Sir Holiday were determined to find out, after all what is Christmas without a little touch of magic.
The song originates from the town Armonk, situated in New York in the United States; there is a general sense within the town that Frosty the Snowman belongs to them. They prove this feeling with annual parades and celebrations in Frosty’s honor after all what more could a snowman want, than fireworks, singing, dancing and all around commotion within the streets.
However, our fascination with snowmen is not limited to Christmas time as is evidenced by the unbelievable success of Olaf from the Disney hit Frozen, Olaf has become somewhat of an icon to all children and many adults who became enraptured within the magic of Elsa and Anna. Not to mention Sven the reindeer, who was my absolute favorite.
Actually, humans have been building snowmen for many hundreds of years, it seems the idea of building images in our likeness and imbuing them with all sorts of magical properties has been a pastime of ours for generations. Snowmen have been traced back all the way to the Middle Ages, with everyone from nobility to your everyday commoners reveling in the chance to transform balls of snow and a pile of sticks right into their very own wintery friend.
Although snowmen were not always beloved friends, unfortunately there is a much darker truth hidden within the magic. Originally snowmen were used as representations of figures that were disliked within the community, for example the Victorians often built snowmen dressed as policemen and pelted him with snowballs. In medieval times, snowmen could be anti-Semitic and dressed up as members of the Jewish community, who the poor, sorrowful community would unfortunately blame their troubles on, especially during the harsh winter nights.
In Belgium, the villagers had their own way of making the insanely cold winters slightly more bearable, their snowmen depicted everything from traditional archetypes of the fool, mermaids, and unicorns to popular idioms of kings who had been made fools or women who had been beaten six ways to Sunday. The snowmen who we have come to know and love, we can think the Victorians for.
When Prince Albert brought his love of Christmas cheer to England, the snowman became an integral part of our festivities and the rest as they say is history. Hence, the next time you see a snowman in a movie, or if Frosty the Snowman decides to enchant your ears while on a shopping trip during this festive season remember that our cuddly men in white weren’t always as good as they would like to make out.
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