The Question is why we celebrate Christmas in Today’s world, where many events and celebrations, either religious or not, often prompts natural emotions and sentiments relating with happiness and joy, which is evident from multiple occasions which are celebrated with the words begin with ‘Happy’, such as ‘Happy Easter’, ‘Happy Birthday’, etc. In a similar view, this brings curiosity for the folks to question about why Merry Christmas is enunciated in this way rather than with ‘Happy’ to begin with. While many are of the view that ‘Happy’ depicts emotion while ‘Merry’ does something in contrast which is rather close to behavior and attitude.
Rather Merry for New Year Celebrations than Happy!
Although, in most cases ‘Merry’ and ‘Happy’ are referred in same sense and essence but are having a distinct connotation, while happiness is what inferred in former and act of joy is specified with latter. But one may wonder to contemplate the use of ‘Merry’ subjected to the new year celebrations just, while the use of ‘Happy’ is rather ubiquitous.
This isn’t just the conventional use for both the words, but the term ‘Merry’ is said to have used ever earlier than ‘Happy’ and has older tractions, but was used to convey pleasant and acceptable nature of anything, while, on the other hand, ‘Happy’ came along based on the word ‘Hap’ which offers luck and fortune, which later on started to come in practice to be used on new year celebrations – Happy New Year.
18th and 19th Century and evolving ‘Merry’
With the passage of time both the words evolved, as many holidays were shaped by Victoria Christmas. Similarly, lesser use of ‘Merry’ is noted in the 18th and 19th century. It is also under the influence of Charles Dickens that merry stuck around Christmas stories and carols as well as in the phrases like ‘the more, the merrier’.
In England merry was deemed in association with lower-class connotation so ‘Happy Merry Christmas’ became widespread. While, in contrast, Americans were not too fond of all the thing that were happening the England and kept with the use of Merry that later on become too festive to be used in Christmas celebrations that anything else would be odd to supplanted ‘Merry’.