Where does the abbreviation 'Xmas' come from?
Yahoo UK
2009-12-07 09:12:15 UTC
Acronyms and shortened words make up so much of our vocabulary we barely pay any attention to them. But they must have some kind of origin: what about “Xmas” instead of “Christmas?”

PS If you’re looking for something to help you feel festive, don’t forget you can download our free Yahoo! Answers Highlights of 2009 eBook here:
351 answers:
2009-12-07 13:48:14 UTC
X representing the initial chi of Greek Khristos ‘Christ’.

From X, the Greek letter chi, first letter of Greek Khrstos, Christ ; see Christ

Usage Note:

Xmas has been used for hundreds of years in religious writing, where the X represents a Greek chi, the first letter of , "Christ." In this use it is parallel to other forms like Xtian, "Christian." But people unaware of the Greek origin of this X often mistakenly interpret Xmas as an informal shortening pronounced (ksms). Many therefore frown upon the term Xmas because it seems to them a commercial convenience that omits Christ from Christmas.

"Christmas," 1551, X'temmas, wherein the X is an abbreviation for Christ in Christmas, from first letter of Gk. Christos "Christ" (see Christ). The earlier way to abbreviate it was Xp- or Xr-, corresponding to "Chr-," and the form Xres mæsse for "Christmas" appears in the "Anglo-Saxon Chronicle" (c.1100).
2009-12-08 08:01:06 UTC
The first four answers are spot on so anyone reading this ignore the other answers. The abbreviation of Xmas for Christmas is not irreligious, as the other answers state the first letter of the word "Christ" in Greek is chi, this is identical to our X. Xmas came into general use from the church. Xmas was originally an ecclesiastical abbreviation used in tables and charts, during the early days of printing, when font size was limited and type was set by hand, abbreviations were used liberally. The cross as someone mentions has nothing to do with it, at Christmas we a celebrating the birth of Christ and his death the cross is associated with Easter and the crucifixion of Christ.
Just call me MAX!
2010-01-21 03:38:11 UTC
Since the earliest days of Christianity, the "chi rho" symbol (looks like an X with a thin P on top of it) represented Christ. It is the first two letters of Christ in Greek and is widely used in iconic art. In England, it was used to represent Christ until the printing press came along. This didn't have a chi rho, so they used an X instead. Although it's written Xmas, it's pronounced Christmas.
2009-12-08 23:07:00 UTC
The English letter "X" is used to represent the Greek letter "chi" with which the name of Christ in Greek begins. Compare the CHI-RHO symbol which looks like an X with a P through it, but which is really composed of the first two Greek letters of the name of Christ in their mayuscula, or capital, form. The original Greek texts of the New Testament were written entirely in capital letters, so their use in decorative Christian symbolism is appropriate. During the Puritan dominated Commonwealth period, under Oliver Cromwell as Lord Protector, the celebration of Christmas "Christ's- Mass" was suppressed and the word itself condemned as "popish", because it included the "mass" element.

The word "X-mas" was used subversively among Catholics and Royalist sympathisers to avoid prosecution by the authorities. Somehow, even after the Restoration of Charles II to the throne in 1660, the abbreviated form survived. Remember that Greek was familiar to most educated men and certainly to the aristocratic families who had remained loyal to the principle of monarchy. However, all that was forgotten and now many feel it is a frivolous way of expressing the idea of Christmas, whereas it is actually a reminder of a time when people risked prosecution to keep the great celebration alive.
2010-01-04 19:13:08 UTC
The first letter for "Christ" in the Greek language is "X." Here it is: Χριστός The New Testament was originally written in Greek. Some wise person turned the long word Christmas into the abbreviation used today, where Xmas saves space, time, and money. Some think Christ was removed due to commercialism, the X removed Christ, but not so.
2010-01-15 11:51:38 UTC
The greek letter Chi ('x') is the first letter for the greek word for Christ, Xristos. Xmas therefore means "Christ's Mass" The abbreviation has been around since the 16th century.

Christmas to Xmas X\was first used by Europeans in the 16th century as an abbreviated form of Christmas. They got the X from the Greek word for Christ, which is Xristos.

P.S. The XMAS was a result of persecutions of Christians in early in 2nd and 3rd century AD when it was illegal to worship or to even write the word Christ.

P.S.The word Xmas is a commonly used abbreviation for Christmas. The "X" in Xmas comes from the word "Χριστός," which means "Christ" in Greek. Xmas is a combination of the "X" from "Χριστός" and the "mas" ending of Christmas, which means mass.
2016-10-16 16:47:24 UTC
Abbreviation For Christmas
2014-08-15 21:41:01 UTC
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2009-12-13 20:21:08 UTC
Most likely, this abbreviation came from the Greeks. They pronounce the letter "X" as "chi" (rhymes with pie). By a slight stretch of fancy, you can imagine that "chi" can sound vaguely like "Christ." Therefore, "Christ" mas --> "Chi" mas --> "X" mas.

Again, this is only my own theory, so I have no real source.

However, other people have very different opinions from me. For example, some religious people were outraged at the phrase "Xmas," because Christ was "crossed out," or people simply want to avoid writing Christ's name. This might have some truth in it, or people might just want to save time by not writing out the word "Christ."

A prove contributing factor was the invention of the printing press. In the earlier models of the printing press, more money had to be paid if more letters were printed. So printing "Xmas" instead of "Christmas" was much cheaper.

Whether it was because of "chi," religious reasons, or the printing press, we might never find out. Most probably it was a combination of all three. However, the more reasons we think of, the closer we might get to the answer. Hopefully someday we will find out.
Rev. Cloggsy
2009-12-08 09:44:36 UTC
Some people in some churches get hot under the collar when they see the word "Xmas" instead of "Christmas" - believing that it makes the Christmas story an unknown factor of "X". Nothing could be further from the truth. The "X" is actually the Greek letter Chi and not the English letter Ex; "X" (Chi) is an early Christian shorthand for the name of Christ so "Xmas" = "Christmas"
2009-12-08 06:24:55 UTC
Well done Paul P!

X is greek for Christ, now some people have been saying its a way out of being religious and still celebrating Xmas and someone also mentions the use of the word Xmas starting around the 16th century now if that is true that would tie in with the Pope and the Greek church falling out over how communion should be taken (the last Pope appologised for this after 500years) in which case maybe there is some point to be made here where rather than opting out of the religious side it is opting out of the Catholic celebration?
2009-12-09 07:50:08 UTC
The abbreviation for X-Mass is a modern style posh wave which started actually in the late 80's. It began with the TV-Serie's X-Files where the X become very quick a acronym for everything mysterious, fascinating and also little bit of the posh-culture. Today we have everything famous named in connection with a X like 'The X-Factor' , 'Generation X' , 'X-Men', 'Malcolm (in the middle) X' and plenty of other X X X's . Geeeee, when the World will ever understand there is also a Y or Z instead looking the world trough a X-Glass. Hope this helps you understand?
2009-12-09 05:34:12 UTC
All the other answers are correct. However some Christians do not like this version of christmas as it seems to cross out the christ in christmas. Christmas is a christian celebration and it is only since it has become commercialised that the term xmas has become more widespread.
2009-12-08 06:58:58 UTC
In the Greek language the first 2 letters of CHrist are XP (chi and rho) .The P was sometimes written on top of the X so it looked almost like an X and was used as an abbreviation for Christ .

So Xmas is just an abbreviation for Christmas.
Silver Fox
2009-12-09 04:44:13 UTC
I would like to suggest the possibility (and this is a random, research-free guess) that Xmas as a contraction of Christmas is represented with an 'X' + mas because our alphabet does not contain a cross- or cruciform-shaped letter. Perhaps, therefore, 'Xmas' is a contraction of the symbolic figure of Christ on the cross and representative of the Christian mass that takes place mid-winter as religious representation of the birth of Christ.
2009-12-09 00:25:17 UTC
It's not actually an X in Xmas but the Greek letter chi (which is written like an X) which is the first letter of Christos - Christ in Greek. In the earliest days of Christianity the chi was used as a symbol for Christ so Xmas is literally CHRISTmas.
2009-12-08 21:25:35 UTC
The word Christmas originated as a compound meaning "Christ's Mass". It is derived from the Middle English Christemasse and Old English Cristes mæsse, a phrase first recorded in 1038. "Cristes" is from Greek Christos and "mæsse" is from Latin missa (the holy mass). In Greek, the letter Χ (chi), is the first letter of Christ, and it, or the similar Roman letter X, has been used as an abbreviation for Christ since the mid-16th century. Hence, Xmas is often used as an abbreviation for Christmas.
2009-12-08 08:46:37 UTC
If anyone has the time to research the origins of Xmas (christmas or whatever you want to call it) you will find that the whole celebration has pagan not christian origins anyway.. Jesus wasnt even born in December, there were no records of the date of his birth and when the 3 "wise men (astrolgers) when to see him he was in a house according to the scriptures and NOT a manger and he was not even a small baby.. None of his disciples or followers or family are on record as having celebrated his birth. As for him dying on a cross - the original word for that translates as a stake not a cross... there are so many reasons why these things are not as they seem and why they have been adopted as "so called christian" for years.

It only takes a little bit of time to look into the real meaning of celebrations today and if you are really bothered it might affect whether you choose to celebrate them or not.

2009-12-08 10:15:01 UTC
This abbreviation for Christmas is of Greek origin. The word for Christ in Greek is Xristos. During the 16th century, Europeans began using the first initial of Christ's name, "X" in place of the word Christ in Christmas as a shorthand form of the word. Although the early Christians understood that X stood for Christ's name, later Christians who did not understand the Greek language mistook "Xmas" as a sign of disrespect.
2009-12-08 09:00:49 UTC
The X in Xmas comes from lingerie catalogues and the modern custom of courting couples to purchase each other seXy gifts. So if a young gel asks for something small and Xpensive for Xmas then her beau might purchase her a thong. This fits in with the traditional seasonal hopes of peace love and goodwill. By extension one could look forward to a xXxmas. Though this is more for young people. As for what does servant of Christ translate to in Greek I believe that is Christodoulos though a better translation is slave of the wet one, or annointed one, and this too fits in with the theme but with more leather and essential massage oils. And if people just made love instead of judging others and getting all angry and annoyed well then it really would put the xXx back into Xmas. Merry xXxmas one and all!
2016-01-25 05:51:17 UTC
The English letter "X" is used to represent the Greek letter "chi" with which the name of Christ in Greek begins. Compare the CHI-RHO symbol which looks like an X with a P through it, but which is really composed of the first two Greek letters of the name of Christ in their mayuscula, or capital, form. The original Greek texts of the New Testament were written entirely in capital letters, so their use in decorative Christian symbolism is appropriate. During the Puritan dominated Commonwealth period, under Oliver Cromwell as Lord Protector, the celebration of Christmas "Christ's- Mass" was suppressed and the word itself condemned as "popish", because it included the "mass" element.
2009-12-08 16:25:16 UTC
The correct answer has been said already...the X is derived from the Greek language.

Anyone saying that Xmas is an abbreviation started by the secular community to take "Christ" out of "Christmas" are ignorant.
2009-12-08 09:25:55 UTC
Christmas is a Pagan Festival that does not originate wit true Christians and was not celebrated by the First Century Christians such as the Apostle Paul. So the origin of xmas is irrelevant. Jesus was not born on 25th December, but around September/ October. If you read the Bible, you would be able to work it out and also if God and Jesus wanted us to celebrate his birth, the exact date would be recorded in the Bible like his death; Which we are commanded to commemorate.
2009-12-08 08:24:57 UTC
Xmas" and "X-mas" are common abbreviations of the word "Christmas". They are sometimes pronounced /ˈɛksməs/, but they, and variants such as "Xtemass", originated as handwriting abbreviations for the correct pronunciation /ˈkrɪsməs/. The "-mas" part came from the Latin-derived Old English word for "mass".[1] The "X" in Xmas is from the Greek letter Chi, which is the first letter of Χριστός, Christ in Greek. Therefore you get 'Christs' mass'
Dr. Samir Osta Uni of Sheffield
2009-12-08 06:57:06 UTC
"Xmas" and "X-mas" are common abbreviations of the word "Christmas". They are sometimes pronounced /ˈɛksməs/, but they, and variants such as "Xtemass", originated as handwriting abbreviations for the correct pronunciation /ˈkrɪsməs/. The "-mas" part came from the Latin-derived Old English word for "mass".[1] The "X" in Xmas is from the Greek letter Chi, which is the first letter of Χριστός, Christ in Greek

Reference/ From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Samir/University of Sheffield
2010-01-17 22:14:51 UTC
some people believe that when people use the abbreviation 'xmas' are people of other religions
2009-12-09 04:01:26 UTC
The "X" in Xmas is a Greek letter khi, pronounced as in the Scottish word loch.

It is an abbreviation of the Greek word for Messiah which is "Khristos".

The English word Messiah comes from the Hebrew, Moshiakh.

This is why one should not pronounce it as EXmas;just say Christmas.
2009-12-08 07:58:11 UTC
There are two explanations:

1. X is the sound CH in Greek. Christ is the Greek word for Messiah/Saviour. X is used as shorthand for Christ (incidentally "mas" is a shortening of Mass - one of the words Christians use for their services of Holy Communion). You will often see the "Chi Rho" (an X cover by a P) on Catholic graves - they are the first two letters of christ in Greek, the original language of the New Testament.

2. X is a cross - another way of remembering Jesus.
2009-12-08 07:24:40 UTC
XMas celebrates originally the invention of the X FIles series, and so the X from the X files, became the X for X Mas. Some say th"e first X rated video was filmed on that date, but I think the X Files deffinition sounds frendlier.
2009-12-08 08:02:20 UTC
Xmas is a fairly modern acronym.

The symbol 'X' can recognised by itself especially in seasonal greetings cards as a 'kiss' also the way we might describe the symbol 'X' is a 'crisscross'; to mark with intersecting lines.

So rather than a deep meaningfull religious connotations, which to be fair while interesting is scraping the barrel somewhat, it may be due to the meaning or a descriptive shortenning of 'crisscross', i.e.


Markie G
2009-12-08 07:43:02 UTC
X traditionally represents the "cross" on which Jesus Christ was crucified and thus the substitution of Christ-mas with X-mas has been used in short hand for years. Interestingly, kisses, often added to a love letter are also represented by a "x" - Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends John 15:13 - God Bless and may Christ be at the centre of your Xmas x.
2009-12-09 07:14:08 UTC
Christmas refers to Jesus Christ who died on a cross; X is an obvious abbreviation for cross.

I've always assumed that was the origin of Xmas
2009-12-09 06:22:56 UTC
X = represents the Greek letter Chi, which is the first letter of the word "Christos", Christ, in Greek. So the English letter X is used as a shorthand for 'Christ' in the word Christmas; thus Xmas.
2009-12-09 03:49:57 UTC
The Greek letters Chi Rho (CR) when put together look very similar to the latin X - hence the use of "X" as a symbol to denote Christ, and as an abbreviation in Xmas.
2009-12-08 08:07:21 UTC
What a stupid question - Criss Cross - Cross is an X - Cristmas turns to Xmas - simple

Also Christmas is a joke anyway - it was invented by the Romans would worshiped a pagan god on the 25th December - probably a guilty conscience let this turn into a celebration of jesus birth, something he never endorsed - his death is what he asked people to comemorate - but no one listened to that because it wasn't driven by materialism
2009-12-22 08:37:45 UTC
The Greek Letter Chi is represented by an X and in the word Xmas, as in the ChiRho symbol for Christ (P=Rho superimposed on the X=Chi) the X is used to represent the Name CHRIST.
2009-12-09 03:45:41 UTC
X is the initial letter of the word for Christ in greek - so the X simply means Christ and Xmas means Christmas.
2009-12-08 07:13:56 UTC
As Christmas was originally the Norse heathen Yule, with its festive tree, Yule log to Thor, roast pig with apples to Freyr, toasts to the elves and Odin's gift giving, an argument could be made for the X being the very same as the Gebo or gift rune. All the winter symbolism of Christmas belongs to northern Europe with its snow and evergreen trees like the pine and the holly, not to the sunny and dusty Middle East. Santa with his red coat and reindeer is none other than a god of the Sami or Lapps, who comes down the smoke hole of the nomadic tents used by reindeer herders, later translated as the chimneys of houses. A Turk called St. Nicholas living thousands of miles away could hardly have anything to do with that.
2010-01-10 16:35:27 UTC
I have heard of various meanings of the x referring to a greek symbol. But I was told in a sermon one sunday in my church that X-MAS is not something to be said if you are a christian and believe in Christ. X crosses out the Christ is Christmas. So as long as I can remember I do not use that term I use C-Mas. Short for Christmas. Just something I thought I would tell you about.
2009-12-08 23:55:18 UTC
This festival "Christmas" was invented by Roman Catholic religion. This was invented mainly because other religions had so many festivals and celebrations which involved dancing, drinking and all sorts of sins which were practiced during that time. There were no such festivals for the Christians. Though there is no solid proof about the exact birth date of Jesus (Son of God), the RC fixed a date in which this festival was to be celebrated.

Since the translation of bible to different languages, they have tried to name the Son of God according to their own style or how the name is to be pronounced in their language. English "Jesus" Arabic "Yesa" etc. There is nothing wrong in this since they represent the same person.

But one need to know what is the true meaning of Christmas is?

In general, the person who is celebrating his birthday should be happy than who celebrates his birthday.

Will the son of God feel happy about it? They have portrayed his as Baby Jesus, tender Jesus, person with a soft nature with a lamb and so many other images.

Just think how awkward will be for you if you stand in the middle of a pig or to be born as a Pig?

Yes the Lord Jesus came in the form of a human to save our sins.

Despite thanking Jesus and Father everyday we indulge in all sorts of sins creating a festival and a season for that festival. We have Christmas ball, we make wine, we drink, we bake cakes, we send cards, manger with BABY JESUS in the middle, sending gifts, christmas games and so many types of sins which I don't want to express in the blog. I would like to ask one last question "What does Santa Claus to do with Christ.
2009-12-08 16:15:19 UTC
The letter X is pronounced Chris in Greek, hence Xmas is same as Christmas
2009-12-08 12:16:24 UTC
The "mas" is, of course, Old English, - as used in Martinmas, Candlemas, etc.

'XMAS' is not a lazy modern abbreviation of 'Christmas', as we are led to believe.

The "X", in Christmas, is from the Greek "CHI" which is similarly represented as "X" and is the first letter of "Christos" - "Christ" in Greek. There is more to the "X" than the first letter of Christ's name.

The 'line of "X" which slopes upwards from left to right should have a little curl at the top right of the line as it did in ancient times - and as it still is, occasionally, today. This representation, in Greek, is the Greek letter, "R" - pronounced "Rho".

The proper pronunciation of the "X" in XMAS is "ChiRho"Mas - i.e. the first two letters of "Christos".

The "Chi-Rho" symbol "X" was an extremely potent symbol in ancient times, during a time of severe repression, and should, today, be treated with as much respect, and reverence, as 'Christmas'.

It is worth noting that the name "Jesus" was a common name at the time. It was "Christos" that made Jesus special. "Christos" means "THE GOLDEN ONE".

2009-12-08 11:37:52 UTC
Ok so in the greek that's what it means, but you show me the percentage of people who actually know that? It should be left as 'Christ', when i see the 'X' i see that as 'Ex' because that's what alot of people treat Christmas like. It's become so much else and become less about Christ to the extent that 'Xmas' has mostly taken the place of 'Christmas' and i'm just saying that as it's the truth. Santa is the counterfeit god who's giving gifts that people 'want' to people (we all know Santa doesn't exist but Satan does and wants attention), when the truth is it's about God giving Christ as the 'gift' that we 'need' to save us. It's about no other present but Jesus, everything else is just about selfishness, about the 'me me me' and what 'i' want when that's not what it's about.
2009-12-08 10:21:01 UTC
Originally it was Christ'.s Mass. To celebrate the birth of the Christ Child. But following the Crucifixion, when the Cross or Rood became a symbol of Christianity, it became, for some, an abreviation, cross mass, thence X mas.
2009-12-08 08:31:01 UTC
The explanation is simple, but not widely known. In the Middle Ages Christmas Day was actually held a day later on Boxing Day. The word Boxing comes from Mandarin Chinese. Boxing = Bu Xing = Cannot do. This meant it was a rest day (Cannot do anything day). Only one activity was allowed on this day, which was to go to mass. It was known as Xing Mass (Can go to Mass). This became abbreviated to Xmas.
2009-12-09 15:28:24 UTC
Prior to knowing the 25th Dec as Christmas it was a Pagan festival ( as are many Christian festivals). For those of none Christian religions who do not celebrate Christmas but still recognise the date the X is used, as it was with those who use a X as a signature to represent 'anyone' rather than Christ. Its just an none christian representation of the festival.
2009-12-09 10:28:50 UTC
The 'X' is really the Greek letter 'Chi', pronounced as the 'ch' sound in 'loch'. This is one of the oldest Christian symbols: the 'Ch' standing as an abreviation for 'Christ', and thus represents a shortened form of Christ-mass. It is possible it was also used as a means of disguising the reference to Christmas when early Christians were persecuted for their faith.
2009-12-09 09:27:11 UTC
I thought it was a really obvious one; an X in pictorial terms is a criss-cross, so Christmas is shortened in spelling to Xmas because Christmas sounds similar to Crissmas so a criss-cross replaces the christ; in other words the cross replaces the criss, if you get me?... anyway that's what I've always thought, but I'm only 17 so I could be wrong.
Etelka D
2009-12-08 10:23:23 UTC
My native language is not English, but I have a guess. The first time I came across this abbreviation was on highways, like Xroad, or simly X for cross(ing). The obsolete version of crisscross is christcross. It seems quite plausible that if X was used for cross or crisscross, for obvious reasons, it could spread to Christ in Christmas.
robert lance
2009-12-08 12:47:12 UTC
The 25th of December is the birth of Mithras not Jesus, and the cross on the buns at Spring Equinox is a sign of the cross roads at which we test ourselves in life.

Besides the upright cross was just another form of the Ankh. The big festival of Yule is what has been merged with an attempt to christianise communities of old.and become what is now considered to be a celebration of jesus but really isn't.
2009-12-08 08:34:34 UTC
The Northern Indo-European folk had an ancient system of 24 runes, which represented the different streams of life. One of their runes- Gyfu- represented by the rune stave X, denoted a gift. It meant gift as in a sacrifice for good- an exchange of something lesser for something greater and it could mean at any level of consciousness or within the physical realm. Yuletide itself originated as a celebration of the return of the sun after the summer solstice, whilst the shortest day of the year at midwinter was known as Mother Night, in recognition of the birth of the sun and also in celebration of all mothers for the joy and sacrifice of motherhood.

2009-12-09 14:24:38 UTC
I know the X is from the greek shortening of Christ, but did this usage not greatly increase with the invention of the telegraph, wherein the transmission of the X saved one the cost of the other five letters.
2009-12-09 04:24:08 UTC
I believe it happened when Simon Cowell paid for the rights and decided to make a 4 month long programme about it where each week the least Father Xmas looking person is voted off only to sell there story to rubbish daily papers saying how all the other Father Xmas's bullied them and that the short Father Xmas who's wife has just died and only has one leg will win because they are the most "talented"..............................................................................or it could be the greek thing : )
2009-12-08 18:10:12 UTC
Xmas is an abbreviation of the word Christmas, most used if you do not want to refer to a faith. Christmas is used differently around the world so if you would like to say Happy Christmas in 20 languages:
2009-12-08 14:10:36 UTC
This was started around 2002-2003 AD by a prophet named Christina Aguilera. After a time, and due to the fact that most of her followers were uneducated and illiterate, she shortened her name from 'Christina' to 'Xtina' therefore making it easier to spell and daub all over school books and bus shelters. This was soon copied by the Christian faith thereby changing 'Christmas' into 'Xmas', the period shops rip you off between 'Halloween' and 'Valentines Day'.

I hope this has helped!
2010-01-08 03:43:19 UTC
"Xmas" is a common abbreviation of the word "Christmas". It is sometimes pronounced /ˈɛksməs/, but it, and variants such as "Xtemass", originated as handwriting abbreviations for the typical pronunciation, /ˈkrɪsməs/. The "-mas" part is from the Latin-derived Old English word for "mass"[1], while the "X" comes from the Greek letter Chi, which is the first letter of the Greek word Χριστός, translated as "Christ".
2009-12-18 10:43:11 UTC
Christmas takes nine spaces to type,

while Xmas takes four spaces to type,

all you editors out there, especially those who want to sell a five space ad, YOU tell me why XMAS is used for the birthday of the Lord's son.

Did I forget to tell you that Verizon charges $ 8.41 for a five space ad ? Oh, but of course this story is just a fabrication
2009-12-08 08:25:23 UTC
The best explanation for this is that the X in Xmas refers to the Cross upon which Christ was cruicified. I personally prefer the full word Christmas and that it should represent why we celebrate Christmas - this means Christ Mass.
2009-12-09 05:02:09 UTC
the real reason for the x in christmas is little known.but the best and ancient belief lies in the history of can be ridden with silly ideas but the answers lie deep in the history of constantinopole.this is what comes to mind for me.disbelievers use the x.the ignorant who couldnt write mark an x,and so on.
2009-12-09 02:36:20 UTC
Why Xmas? I am 72 and my mother taught me that the X stood for the cross on which Jesus died and the "mas" - he died a Man And was our Saviour. On the other hand, my dad thought the "mas" was the mass which was said at Christmas in his honour.
2009-12-08 11:09:17 UTC
Christmas is the name given to the Birth of Christ (as in the Mass of Christ)

People who do not believe or do not care about the meaning, put X in front of the mass as they do not either believe nor care about this.

I think this is very insulting to anyone who is a Christian and who believes.

Let's ALL take the X out of Xmas and put Christ back in!!
2009-12-08 09:16:40 UTC
It is a hand-writing abbreviation from the Greek word for Xmas (pronounced eksmas).
2014-07-26 23:32:18 UTC

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2009-12-24 11:33:48 UTC
What Did Jesus Say About Christmas?
2009-12-09 12:33:57 UTC
The name of Christ in the New Testament Greek Is Chi - Rho - Iota - Sigma - Tau - Omicron - sigma Chi is written as X thus X-mas + Christmas
2009-12-09 02:34:00 UTC
the origin of the word xmas (christmas) derives simply from the word criss"cross, criss being one part of the acronym christmas and most obviously cross" hence the word XMAS,quite obvious really when you think about it,hope this helps all ;o)
2009-12-08 10:41:58 UTC
I was told in sunday school as a child that people tend to use an X for Christ as he died on a cross for us. Put Christ back into Christmas as without him what would we be celebrating? After all Jesus is the reason for the season
Nigel B
2009-12-08 07:23:54 UTC
A well accepted answer is that when written, the X forms a cross (ie 'crossmass').

It's just a simple abbreviation that is quicker and easier to write than the full word.

Happy Christmas / Xmas!
haloween games
2009-12-13 16:51:40 UTC
X mas means Christmas because of the Greek.
2009-12-09 00:55:10 UTC
Could it be along the same lines that communications engineers and technicians will say "Tx" and "Rx" instead of Transmit and Receive when referring to radio transmissions?? Or, even when you sign for a package that has been delivered it will say something along the lines of "Package rx'd by..." The 'X' mearly being a commonly used letter that replaces other letters to shorten a word.
2009-12-08 17:32:48 UTC
The letter "X" was used as an abbreviation or "shorthand" for "Christ" from an early date, possibly as a secret code in times of persecution but also because documents were handwritten before the introduction of the printing press.
2009-12-20 23:40:48 UTC
A lot of my christian friends get angry when I put xmas say in a text. They think that it blocks out the Christ in Christmas so they don't like it.
2014-09-22 09:13:47 UTC

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2009-12-09 06:13:09 UTC
In addition to using the X for Christ as set out in other answers it is also used in parish registers for the 15-1600's in the name Xtopher (Christopher)
derek h
2009-12-08 11:48:38 UTC
A cross is the symbol of Christ and us Christians as Jesus died on the Cross, hence Christ being abbreviated with an X in Christmas.
2009-12-11 13:51:49 UTC
They took the paganism out of the holiday and replaced it with Christ. Eventually we realized that if you could do that with a fictional character, you could do it with any entity. So we put in an X and now you can put Christ, Hanukkah, Gift, Wintereen, or any other string of letters in there and it's just as valid. Thus X is "the set of all non-zero length strings."
2009-12-09 11:14:07 UTC
My dad was in the Merchant Navy and it was only when he came back from a trip to America the Xmas word was heard. I think it is the Yanks invented it and this makes sense as they are a lazy lot, they think they speak English but just you try to get them to spell Colour!!!
2009-12-09 08:07:29 UTC
X is derived from a greek symbol used to represent Christ, hence it replaces the letters in the full word
2009-12-09 02:54:22 UTC
Simply because the prosonym “Christ” which is a Greek word and means “The blessed one” is spelt with the Greek letter “X” (pronounced as “H” like in the word “Hotel”) thus the Word “Xristougenna” (Christmas)
2009-12-08 17:23:23 UTC
The origins and meanings of so many of our Christmas traditions may be found in a book called 'Hold on to Christmas' by Elsepth Haller - available from and Amazon
2009-12-08 11:13:44 UTC
the X represents the Greek letter Chi which was used by early Christians as a secret symbol for Christ ,so Christ Mas becomes X Mas
Vic B
2009-12-08 08:43:02 UTC
Originated as handwriting abbreviations for the correct pronunciation ˈkrɪsməs' Greek Language
2009-12-08 08:10:52 UTC
The X is placed instead of the word Christ to facilitate non christians, Xmas instead of christmas
2009-12-08 07:26:22 UTC
I don't know the answer but what is Christmas all about? Its about Christ being born and then we take it out and then use the word xmas as a Christian I find it offencive
2009-12-08 07:23:50 UTC
Don't know how much truth there is in this , But I was taught that the "X" in xmas stood for Christ . Hence X(Christ)mas.

Could be I've spent most of my life being wrong ?
paddy c
2009-12-08 07:03:58 UTC
That's an easy one! It's simply because the letter X is used to represent the cross that Christ was supposedly executed on.

When believers of this particular stone-age blood-cult see a cross (or indeed, the letter X), they often think of Jesus and the alleged circumstances of his death, so that’s why the ‘Christ’ in the word ‘Christmas’ has been substituted with an ‘X’.

Not sure about all this Greek nonsense; way too complicated.
2009-12-09 05:36:05 UTC
The use of the X for 'Christ' originates from its use as a symbol for 'cross', such as x-stitch, x-word etc.

It was a short step from there to X being used for 'Christ' especially given the association of Chrst with the cross on which he was crucified.
2009-12-08 13:58:07 UTC
I am a Professor of Christian Theology & History at the University of Cape Town, South Africa. Having recently examined the tombs and remains of historic sights in the Middle East, during our expedition it was found that mice were a huge problem during that period for the inhabitants of Jerusalem and surrounding areas. On making further excavations and searching further, we were shown the remains of an old theme park built by the Romans for the masses to visit. Much of the remaining carvings on the walls were of an extremely sexually explicit nature.

On researching the writings of historians who were there at that time, it became quite obvious to us that the abbreviation "Xmax" originates from the pornographic drawings found on the walls and the fact that there were thousands of mice around.

Hence: Xmas (for those who are slow, X = Pornography and Mice = Mouse/Mas.

For further information on my future lectures in the USA during 2010 please do not hesitate to contact me at:

Professor Peter W Francis

BMouse Phd
2009-12-08 09:24:02 UTC
I think that although a lot of people think that it came from the greek for christ it still is used as a way of leaving christ out of christmas. Therefore I will always say and write christmas.
2010-01-08 20:55:57 UTC
"Xmas" is a common abbreviation of the word "Christmas". It is sometimes pronounced /ˈɛksməs/, but it, and variants such as "Xtemass", originated as handwriting abbreviations for the typical pronunciation, /ˈkrɪsməs/. The "-mas" part is from the Latin-derived Old English word for "mass"[1], while the "X" comes from the Greek letter Chi, which is the first letter of the Greek word Χριστός, translated as "Christ".

"Xmas" and "X-mas" are common abbreviations of the word "Christmas". They are sometimes pronounced "eksmas", but they, and variants such as "Xtemass", originated as handwriting abbreviations for the pronunciation "Christmas". The "-mas" part came from the Anglo-Saxon for "festival", "religious event": Crīstesmæsse or Crīstemæsse. This abbreviation is widely used but not universally accepted; some view it as demeaning to Christ, whilst others find it a helpful abbreviation. ... more
2009-12-09 05:57:41 UTC
Because it comes from the Greel word for Christmas that being Xristos
2009-12-09 01:43:13 UTC
i was told that if christmas was shortened to xmas it meant that you where a non believer of jesus christ,so if you are a believer,you should always write out the full name.this was taught to me when i was a child living in deepest devon in the i think most people use xmas to be lazy about the full meaning of the holidays and to be lazy,
2009-12-08 19:57:48 UTC
Xmas is the atheist way to describe christmas. it removes the word Christ and replaces it with an X therefore removing any mention to jesus and the origins of Christmas itself.
2009-12-08 11:41:41 UTC
Xmas is from the television as it is illegal to write christmas on TV shows, this is because religions that don't beleive in christ or christianity may still celebrate christmas as it is so popular due to media.
2009-12-08 09:25:27 UTC
While not disputing any of the answers given so far, I have another possibility that was told to me by my father.

It is that, in Victorian times, the name 'Christ' was considered to holy to be added to the festival of Christmas. Thus, it was replaced with an X.

I guess this is one topic that has a range of possibilities.
Sim H
2009-12-08 08:46:56 UTC
Cross sounds like Christ that's it no need to go all deep and meaningful it was invented by the press because christmas was too long a word
2010-01-09 16:47:27 UTC
I have heard some people say that it was to put an X on Christ. I have also heard some say that it is to symbolize the cross. But there are still others who say it is Greek for Christ.
2009-12-09 09:43:45 UTC
Have always assumed that since Christ is represented by the cross, xmas would be a logical abbreviation
2009-12-09 06:34:14 UTC
The 'X' is a short form of 'Christ'. I guess an empty cross (not a crucifix) would have been more appropriate. Unfortunately this is symbol is not included in our western alphabet. John H.
2009-12-09 00:28:15 UTC
Shorthand used by priests & clerks in medieval times; as in 'Xpofer' for Christopher & usually in Latin. Obviously Christ being associated with his suffering on the Cross.
2009-12-08 15:51:02 UTC
The X stands for the cross that Jesus was crucified on signifying the beginning and end of his life, same as alpha and omega signs in Greek which is used symbolically in Christian churches to this day..
2009-12-08 11:39:28 UTC
To Paul:

maybe Χριστόδουλος?
2009-12-08 08:10:09 UTC
Christmas came from Christ Mass to celebrate Jesus birth, I can only think that the X for xmas is used to symbolise the cross that he died on.
2009-12-09 12:17:36 UTC
People say that if you write X your are not a christian as christians put the christ in christmas.

As a christian i would say that the X x's jesus out of christmas but from another look it if you turn your head it is a cross.

Which does mean Jesus so either way it is Christian and people say that it is christian thing

Just be happy.
2009-12-09 00:58:31 UTC
It is for those non-Christians who celebrate Christmas by substituting an "X" for the "Christ" part of the word. Happy Festive Season!
2009-12-09 00:28:43 UTC
The X represents the cross ie Christ. So the Christ part of Christmas becomes X
Alex T
2009-12-08 07:05:32 UTC
X it was used by the Christians before the Crucifix as the icon; you see it used in the crusades and carved into walls around the supposed birth place of Christ mainly in Bethlehem , Saw it on the Discovery channel

So many origins where it could of come from, I think it’s used as x = Christ maybe??
2009-12-09 05:59:27 UTC
I'm a Muslim and I've been confused with this word 'Xmas' I think the word Christmas carries more weight
2009-12-08 08:49:00 UTC
I don't know the exact answer, but here on the Isle of Man, the common surname 'Christian' was often spelt 'Xtian'. The earliest example I know off is from 1687.
2009-12-08 07:43:32 UTC
The world have characterized Christ with the cross, which to them also translates to mean X, again this could signify what is not right, that's why Christians should stop abbreviating Christ with X.
2009-12-08 06:30:03 UTC
Christ is the English translation of the Greek word Xristos which means the annointed one. Over time, X has been used as a shorthand form of the word.
2009-12-09 02:57:46 UTC
Non religious people didn't want to write the word "Christ" so replaced it with an "X" making Xmas.
2009-12-08 08:57:27 UTC
It comes from those who would squeeze Jesus out of the season! The world i becoming de christianised! And cutting Christ out of Christmas seems to be their main goal? May I remind those people without Christmas there would be no Easter. Without Easter there would be no hope! So to heck with political correctness. Lets put Christ back into Christmas!!!!

Happy Christmas.
2009-12-08 08:32:59 UTC
I have no idea, maybe people got so fed up of writing christmas because it is a long word, they wrote xmas, x for a kiss and mas for lots of.
2009-12-08 06:53:37 UTC
Xmas is to me, the logical abbreviation for Christmas; probably originating from a common need to stop writing Christmas on all those Xmas cards we send.
2009-12-08 23:24:53 UTC
I think that it is a short way to write Christmas as X sounds a little like Christ. It is a little like Xrays to show that it is a way to meet the family and explore gifts.
2009-12-08 10:10:17 UTC
The X is a way of not having to refer to 'christ'. People also now sometimes use Xtian, for his followers too - although if thos so called 'Xtians' READ their bible they would see that their Jesus said Have No Churches.... Ah well, you can lead a sheep to slaughter but you can't make 'em 'think'
2009-12-08 09:37:08 UTC
X is an abbreviation for 'Chris'. Someone who's name is Christopher can shorten it to 'Xtopher' or Christian for 'Xtian'. So for Christmas- it now 'Xmas'.
Ann C
2009-12-08 06:55:33 UTC
X meaning Christos, these are correct answers - to Mandi, I was brought up in the Roman Catholic church too - please don't let that put you off - Christ is a Person, not a religion - find out about Him, not how organisations say He is - you'll find Him in the Gospel of John (and Matthew, Mark and Luke) in the Bible - the real Christos is wonderful!! From a born-again believer in Christ alone!!
people is grass
2009-12-20 03:53:23 UTC
Xmas comes from Christmas. Christ from our Saviour and mass means dismissal in latin.
2009-12-08 08:24:15 UTC
Because if you say Christmas fast is sounds like 'Kiss mas' and whereas the Greek stuff may be true, this is a more fun answer
2009-12-08 07:24:20 UTC
This is an abreviation used to shorten christmas, by indicating Christ died on the cross - hence Christ = Cross. A bit lazy, but that's where we are, and a bit easier for non christians
2009-12-08 07:16:35 UTC
Origin I think religious. Christ's birthday. Christ always associated with the cross i.e X to denote a cross. Hence Xmas.
always happy to help
2010-01-14 16:07:41 UTC
X takes out Christ because the (greek thought that the word Christ was weird) and Jesus our saviour is the Christ and he was born at Dec.25
Clara Belle the pianist
2009-12-22 07:08:15 UTC
Beacause stupid people wanted to take Christ out of Christmas! HE is the reason Christmas came about!!! HE died for our sins so we can live in eternity with him.
Edward P
2009-12-09 03:11:59 UTC
Answer to "Paul" - Your name must be "Christodhoulou" (with "s" the chosen name of the most popular and influential Hellenic archbishop of modern times) where "doulhou" means "servant of" ! Am I right ? Kala Christougenna stous olous !
2009-12-08 10:15:18 UTC
The X in xmas is suppose to stand for the cross christ was crucified on thus the X stands for Christ
2009-12-08 07:21:08 UTC
The answer is simply down to the phonetic spelling [Chris]tmas with the logical opposite [Cross]Mass as in criss-cross and the simplified symbol of X representing the cross which coicidentally is the most prolific christian symbol. The origin is from the mid 20th century.
2009-12-08 06:21:11 UTC
The letter "X" is the Greek letter chi. This is used as an abbreviation for the name of Christ. Xmas = Christ=mas.
2010-01-17 14:46:16 UTC
It is called xmas because if u turn an x around you get a + and the + represents the cross witch jesus died on

2010-01-19 08:56:43 UTC
All these people who don't like our Jesus Christ, want to make sure that Christ is ommitted, but when Jesus returns, they are going to wish they had given their life to Him.
2009-12-09 00:40:03 UTC
Not too long ago, the term 'criss' was interchangable with the term 'cross'. The X is a simple alternative to writing 'criss' which, although incorrectly spelled, is phonetically correct.
2009-12-08 22:14:18 UTC
It came from the non religious group and non believers in Christ it self and they remove the name Christ and put an X next to the word mas. Meaning people who doesn't believe in Christ does it.
2009-12-08 15:17:40 UTC
I don't know, but would suggest X represents Christ in Latin once used by the Christian church, Christ - Mass is the celebration of the Birth, Christmas is therefore the coruption of "Christ's Mass".
2009-12-08 06:30:58 UTC
Medieval. Parchment was v expensive, monks used every abbreviation they could , X was the first letter of 'Christ' as written in Greek, ( a gutteral sound that English doesn't have, a bit like Scottish 'Loch Ranoch' or German 'Ich bin' ) that we now write longhand as 'ch'.
Jim B
2009-12-09 06:56:36 UTC
Is it not simply the cross of Christ preceding the word Mass?
2009-12-08 15:34:56 UTC
Clearly the x instead of christ in the spelling as the x represents the cross remindind us of Jesus. Really more of a shorter spelling though for todays really lazy world
2009-12-08 12:20:06 UTC
It is just a lazy way spelling the full christmas word. short cut is spell the way is sound eg Xmas
2009-12-08 11:54:34 UTC
Xmas came from the ocult, the right Word and Spelling is: CHRISTMAS,

XMAS means NO CHRIST, period, so if you received a card with the word Xmas, return it to the sender.


Beau D
2009-12-08 10:44:30 UTC
X is used to represent Christ (The Messiah) and depicts the Cross associated with him.
2009-12-08 09:41:51 UTC
The X is used as cross to represent Christ in the Christian teachings. Its similar to Xtian for Christian. In Christian doctrine Christ died on the cross and the closest letter of the alphabet to cross is X!
2009-12-08 08:36:35 UTC
Paul, my guess is that your surname is Christodoulos? Should declare an interest here- I speak a bit- my wife is Greek. Robert
2009-12-08 07:05:20 UTC
When you are asked to cross something X is how you do it. Jesus Christ's birth marks the winter solstice: the first step towards rebirth. The eternal rebirth of the cross, the ultimate Christian symbol. Christmas is the yearly renewal of the religion whose symbol is the cross of Christ.
2009-12-08 06:18:20 UTC
According to Wikipedia a stamp was issued in Canada in 1898 bearing the abbreviation XMAS.

The same source also reminds us that X was often used as an abbreviation for Christ.
2014-08-31 07:02:02 UTC
I recommend to clean up the register in order to improve your pc performances and get rid of malwares. A good program you can use is CCleaner
2009-12-09 07:53:35 UTC
I don't really think we should use Xmas because Christmas comes from Christ mas
2009-12-09 04:46:04 UTC
I always assumed the X represented the Cross but could be worng!
2009-12-08 11:13:54 UTC
the cross X is the symbol for Christ hence Christ Mass = Christmas = Xmas
2009-12-08 08:15:01 UTC
This could be a possibility, ..Most people put a kiss at the end of their message i.e. XXX so could Xmas be an abbreviation of KISSMAS (Christmas)
2009-12-08 07:18:56 UTC
the x in Xmas could mean the Christ cos he died on the cross = X = Xmas instead of Christ mas just a thought really, no evidence to that effect
2010-01-12 19:57:51 UTC
Symbol like
Narnia F
2009-12-18 08:26:28 UTC

i just find it easier to say

im sure everyone else does too

common at the end of the day where all lazy humans

we always try to find ways to make things easier.
2009-12-09 09:34:19 UTC
In the middle-ages people still believed it was wrong to take the Lord's name in vain or use it all so believed to say Christ was blasphemous.The 'X', representing the Crucifixion cross was substituted.
2009-12-09 02:47:40 UTC
Coz of the 'X' factor finishing near the end of December
2009-12-09 01:09:42 UTC
interpreted as follows;

X;Implies not: Leading to immaral activities or any thing which is not accepted by a certain group of people.

MAS> Majority.

Therefore the abreviation XMAS Implies that the majority doing immoral or illegal activities.
2009-12-08 10:04:24 UTC
The cross is the sympol of christianity . So the X is really a cross. A short version of Christ.
2009-12-08 08:28:54 UTC
I cant bring myself to write the short version, it is Christmas with Christ crossed out
2009-12-08 06:23:39 UTC
X in xmas is an abbreviation for Christ - used by the earliest christians and even up to this day.
2010-01-07 05:25:42 UTC
I've always wondered that myself too
2009-12-23 08:06:56 UTC
X represents the initial chi of Greek Khristos ‘Christ’.
2009-12-19 05:38:15 UTC
xmas is a shorter name for Christmas
2009-12-09 10:27:39 UTC
X looks like a cross I guess
2009-12-09 04:49:34 UTC
i never say xmas it does not sound right i always say christmas for exampe merry christmas sounds better than sayin mery xmas

from Ruth Robertson from scotland
2009-12-08 11:37:22 UTC
Refers to Christ on the cross. Mas refers to the service.
2009-12-08 11:31:44 UTC
christ was put on a cross. christ kinda sounds like cross. cross is represented by the symbol X. Xmas becomes the abreviated text for christmas like GR8 is for great because it sounds like it.
2009-12-08 09:01:22 UTC
A cross is the symbol of Christ so that is probably the explanation of the abbreviation.
2014-06-16 08:28:26 UTC
Starting in the third century the nomina sacra, or names of Jesus, were sometimes shortened by contraction in Christian inscriptions
2009-12-11 12:38:34 UTC
I think that it came from the non-Christian people so that they can "cross out Christ" from Christmas and use an "x" instead.
2009-12-08 13:50:51 UTC
I don't know if it's a Christian thing, because one of my friends is a Latter - Day Saint and she says it's against her religion to spell Christmas X-Mas.
2009-12-08 08:18:56 UTC
X is used by shops as an abreviation for christmas.It is used to cell merchandise and is completely seperate from christmas
J k, London
2009-12-08 07:38:02 UTC
Can anyone help us? What is the origin of Christmas any way?

Should we all Christians and non Christians celebrate it regardless?

jk, London
2009-12-09 13:01:13 UTC
The X in this instance replaces "Christ" to signify the cross he was crucified upon.

It is a personal usage of the event,one i don't care for.
2009-12-08 08:28:53 UTC
The 'X' is for people who don't believe in Christ such as Hindus, Jews, Buddhists, Muslims and Sikhs. Oh and Atheists. Don't forget us Atheists.
2009-12-08 12:51:23 UTC
X denotes Christ in Christianity going back to Roman era.
2009-12-08 09:11:10 UTC
The X is the nearest to a cross to substitute for Christ
2009-12-08 07:15:06 UTC
A kiss at Christmas
2009-12-09 07:54:41 UTC
Quite simple... X was a short hand way of writing CHRIST in ancient times.
2009-12-09 04:41:26 UTC
What a load of rubbish you are all talking. The X comes from that fact that Mary was a Virgin and therefore the birth of Jesus was "X" rated.
2009-12-08 07:23:57 UTC
Christmas = xmas because christ is the cross or an x therefore xmas
2009-12-08 06:42:50 UTC
I don't know, but I'll go with 'Old Know Alls' answer. I never like to use Xmas, because I always thought it was lazy, but now the truth......Merry Xmas everyone!
2009-12-09 08:18:21 UTC
I don't know about origin, but Christians do find it quite offensive. It's better to put "+mas" rather than "xmas". Be careful who you write it to.
2009-12-08 10:35:20 UTC
Simple !

Because no 1 can be arsed writting christmas ! Duhhh fs lol
2009-12-08 06:38:46 UTC
The "X" in Xmas is from the Greek letter Chi, which is the first letter of Χριστός, Christ in Greek
2009-12-09 02:04:57 UTC
X is another way of writing the word Christ.
2009-12-08 15:20:39 UTC
I've always been under the impression that xmas should be pronounced 'crossmas' and not 'ex mas'.

Spoken quickly it obviously sounds almost indistinguishable from 'christmas'!
2009-12-08 11:37:19 UTC
Someone wanted to remove the word Christ
2009-12-08 11:02:20 UTC
X is used as the sound is similar to Chris.. It is also used for abbreviating Chrysanthemum in horticulture.
2009-12-08 08:24:41 UTC
It's making reference to the return of Nibiru, Planet X the wings of death.
2009-12-08 06:37:25 UTC
Although the "X" being mention relates to a representation of Christ and such, I don't believe this is the "origin" of "Xmas". The "origin" would have to be the first actual USE of the term and I very much doubt that people from that era were calling Christmas "Xmas". I believe Xmas is a relatively new phenomenon brought in as recently as text messaging and the age of the internet as people are looking for shorter and hipper ways of saying things and "Xmas" meets this criteria perfectly. It could also have originated as a marketing ploy by someone.

That being said, these statements are unproven but they are my opinion and anyone who agrees with it makes it just as valid as any other answer.

Thanks :)
2009-12-09 05:38:59 UTC
wasn't X one of the initials from Roman times
2009-12-08 23:31:15 UTC
Some moron said take Christ out of Christmas so they crossed him out xmas
proud mommy of twins
2009-12-30 09:22:19 UTC
X takes out Christ in Christmas.
2009-12-22 09:44:47 UTC
Because it is the mass of kisses, hence "Kiss-mas", why else would mistletoe be of fundamental significance to the ritual!
2009-12-09 03:32:58 UTC
as christ was crucified on a cross, the cross it was then turned on it side to become an X, and christ was then replaced by the X
2009-12-08 23:45:37 UTC
Hi Paul - is your name Christodoulos? Doulos is the Greek for servant.
2009-12-08 19:39:50 UTC
I have seen the word 'crystal' abbreviated to XL.
2009-12-08 11:57:20 UTC
Try Wikipedia.
2009-12-08 07:29:00 UTC
Well, I believe people just found it convenient to write 'X' instead of 'Christ'. I really don't like it because it makes it look like an "x-rated" stuff. My Christ is not "X". Merry Christmas.
2009-12-08 07:13:15 UTC
I like to think of it as Kiss - mass thus replacing the christianity with an altogether more sacred holiday but allowing anyone who doesn't know me that well to think i am celebrating the standard event.
2009-12-08 06:28:37 UTC
I prefer the simple approach and "the David" has it. Well done man...... though the Greeks have it for sure. Makes a heap of sense not all these Catholic, Jewish and other misc. reasons
2009-12-12 21:47:45 UTC
Using Xmas for Christmas used to bother me a lot then I learned that X is really a common and ancient Greek abbreviation for Christ.

Jesus Christ in Greek is ΙΗΣΟΥΣ ΧΡΙΣΤΟΣ and written in the English alphabet is "IHCOYC XPICTOC" or "IHSOYS XPISTOS"

Starting in the third century the nomina sacra, or names of Jesus, were sometimes shortened by contraction in Christian inscriptions, resulting in sequences of Greek letters such as:

• Jesus •

I (iota)

IH (iota eta)

IC (iota sigma) (first and last letter)

IHC (iota eta sigma)

IHS (iota eta sigma)

JH (iota eta)

JC (iota sigma)

JHC (iota eta sigma)

JHS (iota eta sigma)

• Christ •

X (chi)

XP (chi rho)

XC (chi sigma) (first and last letter)

XPC (chi rho sigma)

XPS (chi rho sigma)

• Jesus Christ •







The Greek letter sigma has been translated as both "C" and "S"

The Greek letter iota has been translated as both "I" and "J"

If abbreviating the name of Jesus Christ is good enough for the ancient Christian catacombs then I will let it slide.

With love in Christ.
2009-12-09 09:32:54 UTC
X is initial chi of Greek Christos 'Christ'. K is correct
2009-12-08 17:18:46 UTC
All I know of this is that X is the symbol of Christ in the Book of Kells. How it continues to be used that way, I don't know.
2009-12-08 12:14:31 UTC
Paul- I don't speak Greek but looks like your surname could be something like


or xhuperetes
2009-12-08 08:29:34 UTC
X is Greek abbreviation for Christ.
2009-12-08 08:17:14 UTC
"Xmas" is something I never use as it is blocking out Christ from the word Christmas.
2009-12-09 09:10:02 UTC
It comes from Cross, ie Christ on the cross mas
2009-12-08 16:30:32 UTC
70s glam rock band Slade were the first to spell xmas with an x. All their songs were written in simplified spelling (e.g. mama weer all crazee now).
2009-12-08 06:53:29 UTC
very simple indeed.

since christmas was meant to celebrate and commemorate the birth of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ it has now become a commercial holiday where that non existing guy called santa is exalted and food and chocolate and nothing to do with Jesus Christ, so Christ has been removed from the word CHRISTMAS.

if u think i'm lying take a poll on people of any age and ask how many know about Christ Jesus compared to santa, you'll be so disappointed, only if you are a born again christian of cause.
2009-12-09 05:29:21 UTC
Obviously it comes from Australia where they spell beer XXXX.
2009-12-08 07:19:37 UTC
Laziness. Seriously, I detest 'Xmas', some things just shouldn't be abbreviated
2009-12-28 20:57:24 UTC
Chi Ro*
2009-12-08 16:37:47 UTC
people were to lazy to write the full word christmas & the other big influence was when coca cola changed santa claus from wearing green to their own colours which is red & white.
2009-12-10 13:50:44 UTC
It comes from Cris Cross .
2009-12-08 10:44:57 UTC
Because they can't be bothered to write Christmas
2009-12-08 07:19:07 UTC
From some lazy era before computers were invented, and probably some crass newspaper editor in mid-Atlantic.
2009-12-08 16:38:28 UTC
i dont like it when people use the word xmas because they are crossing out Christ and after all Jesus is the reason for the season
2009-12-08 08:10:00 UTC
from the Greek Christos
2009-12-08 07:45:31 UTC
Itis a guess! but I think they used to crucify people upside down on a X.
2009-12-08 06:11:23 UTC
use xmas because after writing in 20 cards 'Merry Christmas' and on every present tag, i get bored and lazy so i shorten it... not because im a non believer... its just easier its the same as every other word in the english language, shortened for the people like me in the world... can i ask why everything in life is pointed towards religion, christmas is no longer a religious period for many, just a time to receive and give and to get together with family..
2009-12-08 14:48:26 UTC
X is for Christ and the Mas is self explanatory
2010-01-20 15:33:03 UTC
X is for christ as in cross and then add mas
2009-12-08 08:42:52 UTC
your all wrong, its because chrismas is hard to fit on a mug and it costs the printing company less money
2009-12-08 07:37:09 UTC
I reckon its because x is a cris cross - cris tmas = christmas
Peter R
2009-12-08 06:39:16 UTC
"X" is a symbol for Christ, from the Greek letter chi (X). Christ + mas = X + mas = Xmas
Guess What
2009-12-08 06:13:38 UTC
When you split the word Christmas, you get 'Christ' and 'Mas'. When Christians talk about Christ, it is usually originated with the Cross (on which Jesus was placed on). Hence, a cross is represented by the letter 'X' in the English Alphabet.

Therefore, you get 'Xmas'.
2010-01-16 08:47:37 UTC
i always thought that it was because it started as a cross representing Christ, and then it just became an X overtime.
2009-12-08 19:41:12 UTC
xmas is short for christmas
2009-12-08 09:28:41 UTC
is Greece words, it means: "X" -means TEN , and "mas"-means TABLE. Ten people sat down together and planned date of birth of Jesus.Those ten people was very prominent and isn't Jesus date of birth,just some people made it.
2009-12-08 06:29:52 UTC
Christmas actually had nothing to do with Jesus and was actually stolen by the Romanians off the Pagans so the fact that it we have abbreviated it is probably down to our own laziness and nothing to do with jesus at all. As the calenders do not match up with what the bible says so there is no way Jesus was born that day. So Christmas is nothing to do with christianity!!
2009-12-09 11:05:26 UTC
Christ Mass or the Mass of Christ
brian t
2009-12-09 08:28:44 UTC
miss pronouncing chris as kiss mas....another way of doing kiss is X....hence Xmas...well thats wot i finks n e ways
2009-12-08 07:24:39 UTC
Because our 'christian' country has chosen to ignore Christ, the reason for the season. Consequently, our country is suffering the consequences in so many different ways.
2009-12-09 05:40:26 UTC
x as in kiss and everyone wants to kiss you at christmas good hey !!
2009-12-08 12:43:52 UTC
It isn't the letter "X", it's a cross - Crossmas > Christmas

(seriously though, I have no idea) :P
2009-12-08 06:17:09 UTC
Comes from the US, because the people there are extremely lazy and therefore shorten everything, even using just single letters instead of the complete and correct words. Like humour or favourite is in US "English" spelled without the "u". Birthday has been shortened to "b-day", and there are many more examples...
2009-12-10 12:44:03 UTC
people who int got the time to spell Christmas or who cant spell it lol
2009-12-09 03:40:28 UTC
X is short for 'Christ...........'

It saves time for the written word.

Similar use of 'X' :

TX is short for 'Transmitting/transmitter'

RX is short for 'Receiver/receiving'
L D Man
2009-12-08 15:18:55 UTC
X represents the cross that Christ died on.

They used X shape crosses not t shaped.
2009-12-08 09:12:15 UTC
I believe it is simply just a 'cross' that replaces 'Christ' - thus literally 'cross-mas', but more commonly pronounced 'Ex-mas'
2009-12-08 08:41:30 UTC
the x is in fact a cross representing christ that is jesus christ whos christ's mass i.e. christmas is all about
2009-12-08 06:55:08 UTC
x is the letter in greek for ch that is why in churches one will see xp for p in greek is r and so we get christos
2009-12-08 06:48:29 UTC
In this instance it means absolutely nothing EXCEPT THAT THE PERSON USING IT IS LAZY, HAS NO RESPECT AND SCANT REGARD FOR THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE. The X has been used simply to make the word Christmas shorter because they cannot be botherd to write the full word Christmas, the birth of Christ. If that same person was to recieve a birthday card with the message "Happy Birthday X" they would be quite annoyed or upset. Britain is a Christian country yet I bet the same person who is substituting Christ for an X is the same one complaining about immigrants and their religions invading this country. Religious or not, if you want to celebrate the birth of Christ as Christmas then please write it properly and remember why you are doing it. Out of respect please invite your friends and family to put Christ back into Christmas.
2010-01-08 02:00:40 UTC
people who are too lazy to type, write or talk a few extra letters.
2009-12-09 06:21:16 UTC
Paul, is your surname Xdoulos?
2009-12-08 08:14:49 UTC
because we can not be botherd to write the whole thing like christmass its easyer to write xmass other than lazyness i have no idea why
2009-12-08 08:10:35 UTC
Because people are too lazy to write Christmas!!!!!!
2009-12-08 07:50:30 UTC
christ is accociated with the cross so the christ in christmas was substituted with an X.
2009-12-08 16:50:01 UTC
wow how deep are all of you

god Love's each and everyone of US

what the eye can't see the hart will grieve

Jesus was born in september the church moved his birthday bacause it clashed with one of there holy holidays
2009-12-08 09:56:33 UTC
the x is for the cross of christ. so christ is simply replaced with an x. after all it's not criss mass is it?
2009-12-08 06:48:07 UTC
The X of Xmas represent the Cross of Christ thus you are taking the shorthand way of writing Christ plus mas for Christmas
2009-12-09 07:46:02 UTC
who's actually Yule not Christmas anyway! If Jesus was ever born, it was not in December
2010-01-18 21:38:35 UTC
The Devil to block out Christ.
Jenni H
2009-12-08 15:37:28 UTC
could be like old text style and because "X" was a kiss i could be kissmas but because it was an "X" people just said xmas. its a possibilty.Good luck though.
2009-12-08 11:08:02 UTC
'X' is the greek symbol 'chi', which is pronounced like a K
2009-12-08 09:04:05 UTC
Hmm i woudve thought X is said like cross, and 'Chris' is obviously CRISS, so CRISS[mas] and CROSS[mas] BAHAA :D x
2009-12-08 07:05:16 UTC
the letter X if turned sideways is a cross ,associated with the crucifiction ,therefore to do with the birth of Jesus
2010-01-10 11:47:53 UTC
it was ripped off from brickmas.. good to see there are so many true masons out there!
2009-12-11 06:11:37 UTC
people usually hav sex on christmas so they just put the X there

2009-12-08 15:23:33 UTC
I think it has something to do with Christ and the cross
2009-12-08 12:47:36 UTC
From the shape of the cross that Jesus died on
2009-12-08 07:19:49 UTC
2009-12-08 11:00:01 UTC
does it matter jesus was not born on the 25th of december the god Mithras was ( jesus was prob born in april or something)
2009-12-08 06:58:22 UTC
It comes from Simon Cowell, he has taken over the number one song and now wants to brand 'Christmas'...............
2010-01-07 03:45:32 UTC
chi of Greek Khristos ‘Christ’
*freakishly amazing*
2009-12-18 05:32:47 UTC
i think its cuz x is sort of like a cross, like the one jesus was hanged on =]
2009-12-08 12:17:13 UTC
atheist that dont want to associate christianity in christmas so X is crossing out christ in christmas
2009-12-09 09:52:18 UTC
represents the cross and cruxifiction
2009-12-09 04:35:27 UTC
2009-12-08 15:39:33 UTC
Pure laziness.
Samuel L
2009-12-08 07:16:53 UTC
Pretty assured? haha
2009-12-09 15:54:34 UTC
2009-12-09 06:03:00 UTC
who cares just enjoy
2009-12-08 17:50:32 UTC
its just X mas "X" representing the crucifix
2009-12-08 12:11:57 UTC
i cant x plain it merry christmas
2009-12-08 08:40:17 UTC
Its for people who do not believe in GOD
2009-12-09 03:58:03 UTC
Maybe someone just thought it looked good!?!
2009-12-08 08:46:47 UTC
because the 'X' represents the cross of christ.
2009-12-08 16:37:04 UTC
2009-12-08 10:13:23 UTC
lol the x is a cross so its crossmas, which sounds like crismas.
2009-12-08 06:28:07 UTC
It matters not if you know the symbolism, . What does matter,is if you know the man.

JESUS, the reason for the season. Happy Christmas to all.
2009-12-24 17:27:39 UTC
2009-12-08 15:31:04 UTC
it a new txt acronym. for kiss my ***. X m as.

Merry XMAS

amazon dot com buyer...
2009-12-28 23:04:13 UTC
wikipedia might help
2009-12-08 06:46:19 UTC
it's is a lazy way to write the whole word, shortening christmas to xmas.
2009-12-08 06:21:30 UTC
X also is called a cross. I.e Crossmas similar sounding to Christmas!!!!
2009-12-08 06:20:58 UTC
Hint:- It's all Greek to me!
Firas H
2010-01-19 08:24:21 UTC
search on google:)
2009-12-08 08:09:12 UTC
i thought i was supposed to get the answer this is crap!
2009-12-08 06:50:25 UTC
It stands for Focking christmas
2010-01-10 10:37:47 UTC
2010-01-09 17:09:05 UTC
2009-12-08 07:15:12 UTC
`cos pple carnt be arsd to wrte th hole wrd
2009-12-08 07:23:01 UTC
Jesus couldn't spell when he was born
2009-12-08 11:58:38 UTC
Paul it isn't "Christopher" is it??
2009-12-08 11:20:12 UTC
'x' is the 'Cross' on which Christ was crucified
2009-12-08 06:40:46 UTC
The X represents the cross on which Christ was nailed.
2009-12-11 23:13:21 UTC
2009-12-09 12:31:41 UTC
who cares?
2009-12-08 14:39:41 UTC
2009-12-08 06:33:15 UTC
The X just sounds cool
☼☺♥XxAly Rox Her Sox♥xX☺☼
2010-01-17 18:46:29 UTC
The abbreviation of Christmas as "Xmas" is the source of disagreement among Christians who observe the holiday. Dennis Bratcher, writing for a website for Christians states "there are always those who loudly decry the use of the abbreviation 'Xmas' as some kind of blasphemy against Christ and Christianity". Among them are evangelist Franklin Graham and CNN journalist Roland Martin. Graham stated in an interview "... for us as Christians, this is one of the most holy of the holidays, the birth of our savior Jesus Christ. And for people to take Christ out of Christmas. They're happy to say merry Xmas. Let's just take Jesus out. And really, I think, a war against the name of Jesus Christ." Martin likewise relates the use of "Xmas" to his growing concerns of increasing commercialization and secularization of one of Christianity's highest holy day.Bratcher posits that those who dislike abbreviating the word are unfamiliar with a long history of Christians using X in place of "Christ" for various purposes.

The word "Christ" and its compounds, including "Christmas", have been abbreviated in English for at least the past 1,000 years, long before the modern "Xmas" was commonly used. "Christ" was often written as "XP" or "Xt"; there are references in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle as far back as AD 1021. This X and P arose as the uppercase forms of the Greek letters χ and ρ used in ancient abbreviations for Χριστος (Greek for "Christ"), and are still widely seen in many Eastern Orthodox icons depicting Jesus Christ. The labarum, an amalgamation of the two Greek letters rendered as ☧, is a symbol often used to represent Christ in Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox Christian Churches.

The Oxford English Dictionary (OED) and the OED Supplement have cited usages of "X-" or "Xp-" for "Christ-" as early as 1485. The terms "Xpian" and "Xtian" have also been used for "Christian". The dictionary further cites usage of "Xtianity" for "Christianity" from 1634. According to Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of English Usage, most of the evidence for these words comes from "educated Englishmen who knew their Greek".

In ancient Christian art, χ and χρ are abbreviations for Christ's name. In many manuscripts of the New Testament and icons, X is an abbreviation for Christos,[citation needed] as is XC (the first and last letters in Greek, using the lunate sigma); compare IC for Jesus in Greek.

Other uses of "X" for "Chris-"

The proper names containing the name "Christ" other than aforementioned are rarely abbreviated in this way (e.g. Hayden Xensen for the actor name "Hayden Christensen"). This apparent usage of "X" to spell the syllable "kris" (rather than the sounds "ks") has extended to "xtal" for "crystal", "Xtine" for "Christine" and on florists' signs "xant" for "chrysanthemum" (though these words are not etymologically related to "Christ": "crystal" comes from a Greek word meaning "ice", and "chrysanthemum" comes from Greek words meaning "golden flower", while "Christ" comes from a Greek word meaning "anointed").

In the 17th and 18th Centuries, "Xene" and "Exene" were common spellings of the given name Christene. Christina Aguilera has at times gone by the name Xtina (the "t" should not be considered redundant as, as is noted above, "Christ" was often shortened historically to "Xt" not just X).


Merry X-mas!!!!!!!!! (Christmas)
2009-12-20 15:42:24 UTC

i use c-mas
2009-12-08 17:36:42 UTC
2009-12-08 16:47:03 UTC
is your surname xwasherwoman
2009-12-08 11:00:32 UTC
its to save time :)
2009-12-08 06:36:51 UTC
Christ mass Christ is the cross therefore xmas
2009-12-08 16:27:44 UTC
I really don't have a clue.
2009-12-08 06:52:33 UTC
Maybe it's just just to help those people who can't spell!
De Marney
2009-12-08 08:22:38 UTC
it's because it shorter
2010-01-11 15:35:47 UTC
they r taking CHRIST out of CHRISTmas
2009-12-08 06:36:07 UTC
X is an unknown factor in Maths...Christ is not unknown and I think it is inappropriate to equate Christ to and X.
2009-12-08 06:38:54 UTC
the X is a a cross,, meanin christ,, christ -mas like the name xavier is CHRIST- avier,, christopher in another spellin,, easy peasy
roger m
2009-12-08 06:35:07 UTC
christ could not write his name so like other illiterats he signed with a x, hence xmas instead of christmas.
David K.
2009-12-08 06:44:11 UTC
Cause we're lazy?
2009-12-08 11:51:43 UTC
2009-12-08 11:00:10 UTC
i don't know
2009-12-08 07:40:18 UTC
Who cares - get a life.....................
2009-12-08 07:08:00 UTC
2009-12-08 06:12:54 UTC
it easier to say when your drunk i guess
2009-12-08 05:33:47 UTC
I can confirm the "X" being a Greek replacement for Christ as my surname is greek and begins with Christ, I have seen my surname written with an "X" to replace the Christ above shops in Cyprus. For those of you clever enough my surname means Servant of Christ, Any of you can work it out from that?
2009-12-09 08:16:10 UTC
dunno cos people cant be bothered to right christmas
2009-12-08 23:27:57 UTC
2009-12-08 05:41:25 UTC
Xmas is an abbreviation of the word Christmas, plain and simple (no gobbledygook about crosses). When read, it should be pronounced as Christmas not Xmas.
2009-12-08 06:01:33 UTC
because the x stands for a crucifix
2009-12-08 05:53:16 UTC
It is an abbreviation of Christ in greek lettering and was used as far back as the 16th century. Though I think it's more used nowadays so that people who aren't Christian can still celebrate "Xmas" as opposed to Christmas and won't be left out.

- I celebrate friend-mas to avoid all x/christ-mas arguments.
2009-12-08 05:46:26 UTC
As a baptist youth minister i found this answer very funny.

Jesus Christ couldnt write so he put a X down for his name, hence X mas (Christ / mas)
John C
2009-12-08 05:32:46 UTC
It could be from the reformation. When reformed Christians no-longer worshiped using the catholic mass.The Christmas midnight mass became Xmas. Meaning no-longer using the catholic mass.

2009-12-07 09:20:16 UTC
Christmas is to celebrate christ and the crusifixe was a t so we rotated it and made an X and made it Xmas
2009-12-07 09:19:36 UTC
Since the earliest days of Christianity, the "chi rho" symbol (looks like an X with a thin P on top of it) represented Christ. It is the first two letters of Christ in Greek and is widely used in iconic art. In England, it was used to represent Christ until the printing press came along. This didn't have a chi rho, so they used an X instead. Although it's written Xmas, it's pronounced Christmas.
2009-12-08 06:10:56 UTC
I was told that it is just another Americanism. The USA say criss instead of the British cross (X) so that x-mas to the Americans is criss-mass. Like much of our language it is being infested with American spelling and pronouncements. If the French had taken America we would not have this trouble, but what fun it would be seeing the French trying to keep their language clean from their American cousins.
2009-12-08 06:06:52 UTC
X is the sign for a Kiss - hence X (kiss) mas. Everyone seems to fall in love with this time of the year and fall in love with each other all over again, or just for the first time. So Merry Kissmas to you all.
2009-12-08 06:02:20 UTC
Jews don't write the word "Christ" so they replace it with an "X"
2009-12-08 06:00:04 UTC
Jesus was crucified on the Cross (X represeting the cross) and the Mass tells the story
2009-12-08 05:59:31 UTC
Christ died on the X (cross)
2009-12-08 05:56:25 UTC
Paul Christodoulos I reckon???
2009-12-08 05:50:37 UTC
I have always presumed it was because of the cross that Jesus died on, and that has become the symbol of Christianity.
Heather G
2009-12-08 05:49:34 UTC
It comes from a childs mispronounciation of Kiss mas which I always thought was the explanation for it and a slighly more cute one.
2009-12-08 05:48:53 UTC
paul jesus how is that a greek surname??
TRT David
2009-12-08 05:48:35 UTC
x.... because it is wrong.
2009-12-08 05:46:10 UTC
I always thought it came from USA publicity as they were to lazy to spell Christmas
2009-12-08 05:46:02 UTC
x = is latin for chris ?

x mas

mas i slatin for celebration

hence clelebration of chris

an uneducated guess - lol
2009-12-08 05:43:37 UTC
x is a crucifix symbol...drrrrrrr
2009-12-08 05:38:44 UTC
I went to a catholic school and we were always taught that the x was to omit christ from the christmas to allow non-believers to celebrate a time of forgiveness and love. I still write christmas but since going to a catholic school, it did a fair bit of damage, so I am a non believer.
2009-12-08 05:35:18 UTC
Jesus Christ couldnt write so he put a X down for his name, hence X mas (Christ / mas)
No! One Nose
2009-12-08 05:29:39 UTC
It has nothing to do with Christ or the cross. The cross is a symbol of Easter for a start and this explanation is probably used to add meaning to the true reason of this abbreviation. X is an unknown quantity. To remove the Christian elements from Christmas the word CHRIST is replaced with an X. As a Christian I find the term Xmas highly offensive. Let's keep the CHRIST in CHRISTmas!
2009-12-07 10:13:11 UTC
i know it was first brought up by the less religious ones. they removed the christ from it and replaced it with 'x'. i can't be certain of the correct explanation, but i'm pretty assured i have the right idea.
2009-12-07 09:24:38 UTC
christmas it better to say, i would only use xmas in text not speaking
yo yo YO!
2009-12-07 09:21:30 UTC
Christmas is Jesus's Birthday right... Jesus is Christ..hence "CHRIST" mas...

Jesus was nailed to a cross... the letter X looks like a cross tilted.....

and that my friend is where Xmas came from :-)
2009-12-07 09:20:59 UTC
Miz Tef
2009-12-08 05:47:44 UTC
Xmas instead of Christmas? It comes from people wanting to exclude (x-out) Christ from the celebration. A "political correctness" move so as not to offend non-Christians? Or is it merely (rightly) portraying the sign of the times, that the celebration really doesn't have much, if any, thing to do with Jesus these days?

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