Christmas Customs… How They Began
The wassail bowl that we associate with Christmas celebrations comes from an ancient Saxon drinking custom. The medieval wassail bowl was chosen for its size and beauty and was decorated with arcs of evergreen over the top. The drink itself was a combination of hot ale, sugar, nutmeg or ginger, decorated with baked apples.
Christmas carolers in old England often carried wassail bowls with them when they went caroling. They would go “wassailing” to the house of a friend, sing a carol, and offer a drink to those inside.