Bah Humbug is one response to Christmas, exemplified by Dr Seuss’ The Grinch.  In 1644 Parliament was peopled with Puritan Grinches, and their declaration cancelling Christmas has now been reproduced on a tea towel.

Clearly these were not populists, appealing to the lowest common denominator.  I wonder sometimes how they managed to garner support at all.  Did anybody advise them to lighten up?

You can now buy, for the Grinch – or the theologian - in your life, a tea towel printed with a Puritan denunciation of Christmas.

Everybody needs tea towels, and anyway they can be used as ecologically sound wrapping paper: you could easily wrap a bottle of whisky in one.  Consider giving it to your Vicar, in case s/he has fallen into extream Forgetfulness.

The recipient might be expected to show how clever they are by deciphering the script, which reads as follows:

An Ordinance of the Lords and Commons Assembled in Parliament for the better Observation of the Feast of the Nativity of Christ

Die Jovis, 19 December, 1644

Whereas some Doubts have been raised, whether the next Fast shall be Celebrated, because it falleth on the Day which was usually called the Feast of the Nativity of our Saviour: The Lords and Commons in Parliament Assembled, do Order and Ordain, that publick Notice be given, that the Fast appointed to be kept the last Wednesday in every Month ought to be observed, until it be otherwise Ordered by both Houses of Parliament, and that this Day in particular, is to be kept with the more solemn Humiliation, because it may call to Remembrance our Sins, and the Sins of our Fore fathers, who have turned this Feast, pretending the Memory of Christ, into an extream Forgetfulness of him, by giving Liberty to carnal and sensual Delights, being contrary to the Life which Christ led here on Earth, and to the Spiritual Life of Christ in our Souls, for the Sanctifying and Saving whereof Christ was pleased both to take a Human life and to lay it down again.

The Christmas is Banned tea towel is available from Present Indicative.

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