Is it Blasphemous to Spell the Word “Christmas” as “Xmas”?
Yes, Christmas is over...but that didn't stop this person from asking a nagging question:
Q: Please give me some information: when I was growing up, I was always told that if you spelled Christmas as "Xmas" it was blasphemous. So why is it sometimes spelled that way?
A: I was told that, too! Adults (including teachers) told me that if you spelled it as "Xmas," you were crossing out Christ's name; but I discovered later that the "X" is a Greek reference to Jesus. "Xmas" originated as handwriting abbreviations for the pronunciation "Christmas;" the word "Christ" was often written as "XP" or "XT" as far back as 1021 AD. In the New Testament, X is used as an abbreviation for Christos and in the 1500's the words "Xian" and "Xianity" were used as abbreviations of "Christian" and "Christianity" - so it seems that the term "Xmas" is not as blasphemous as I had been told all those years ago.....even though I still feel compelled to write the whole word out!