The Brumalia (December 25) was celebrated as the birthday of Sol Invictus (Natalis Solus Invicti). By then, the day was perceived as lengthening after the winter solstice around December 21. The name comes from bruma and refers to the shortest day of the year, the winter solstice.

The Christian celebration of December 25 as the birthday of Christ did not come about until the third century AD and probably owes many of its characteristics to the pagan festivals of the Saturnalia and the Brumalia.

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