Idealized illustration of family at the holiday appears in William Makepeace Thayer's "Merry Christmas: A Christmas Present for Children and Youth." A popular children's writer, Thayer attempted to weed out the pagan traditions from Christian piety, but during the 1800s it was a losing battle as the "fun and frolic" he condemned became mainstream.
Thayer, William Makepeace
Thayer, William Makepeace. "Merry Christmas: A Christmas Present for Children and Youth." Boston: Cyrus Stone, 1853
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