What is Boxing Day? Why is it Called Boxing Day?

Image of Boxing day Fox Hunting

I am tired of being asked repeatedly about the questions related to Boxing Day. There are a huge bunch of people who still want to know, “What is Boxing Day” and “why it is called Boxing Day?”.

So, I decided to write a post and provide answers in short, so people can understand this holiday more.

So, here we go.

What is Boxing Day?

Many people think, that this festival is related to the sport “boxing”, but believe me, it has no relation with the sport “boxing” or any other sport.

Actually, Boxing Day is just the extension of the holidays (as it is a national Bank holiday), where all you get some extra time to spend with your family and to eat-up all the stuff left during Christmas.

If I take it as fun, then I can call it a greedy day as all people living in Ireland and UK are not fulfill with the Christmas holidays, so then they added this Boxing Day to get extended holiday to have some extra fun with the family.

Although, the Origin of Boxing day is way back in its history, which you can read on Wikipedia.

Why it is called “Boxing Day”?

Well, the arguments keep going on, on the topic of “why it is called Boxing day”, may be you can find the answer in the history of this festival written on Wikipedia or below are some reasons, which may or may not be correct.

  • Traditionally, the boxing day is for the servants, where they have been given Christmas box (Christmas present) and a holiday, to let them go home and give Christmas boxes to their families.
  • Money is collected in a box and then place in a church, so that it can be opened on the next day of Christmas, which is called as Boxing Day and all the money is given to Poor.
  • You can get more information about this, when you go deep into the history of Boxing Day.

Activities on Boxing Day

Usually, Boxing Day is the continuity of Christmas Celebrations and the time to spend some more time with your families.

Many also go out of their homes and enjoy various entertainment related activities, like Horse Racing, pantomimes, plays, variety shows, exhibitions, etc..

But recently, The Boxing has become synonymous with many national and international sports, like Football, cricket, Horse Racing, etc., as every year, on this day, many football are played in UK, and in Australian cricket team players a Test Match starting on Boxing Day.

People also really enjoy Horse racing on this Holiday.

Also on Boxing Day, the British show their eccentricity by taking part in all kinds of silly and Crazy activities, which include bizarre traditions like swimming the icy cold English Channel, fun runs and charity events.

Sports (test cricket in Australia) on Boxing Day
Sports (Test Cricket in Australia) on Boxing Day

Shopping on Boxing Day

Traditionally, Boxing day was for family enjoyment and fun. but recently, it has become a shopping season, when the sale starts.

A few years ago, the Sales and Deals might get released on new Year, but now, it gets released on Boxing day and the day which was introduced for the relaxation of family, sees number of Boxing Day Sales.

Fox Hunting on Boxing Day

Fox Hunting was major part of Boxing Day before it got banned in 2004, but hunters still gather each year in read hunting coats for the celebration. As per rules, Hunters can not chase Fox with dogs, but now, Fox is replaced with artificial Trails, which are chased by Dogs.

Although, after the change of government in 2015, the debate over Fox Hunting again started, as huge number people came in support of it.

Image of Boxing day Fox Hunting
Image Source: Wikipedia

When is Boxing Day?

It occurs every year on 26th December, which is also the day after Christmas. It is the national Holiday in Ireland and UK. In case, the day after Christmas is Saturday or Sunday, which are already holidays, then the this boxing day holiday will get passed to Monday. and then it becomes the public Holiday.

Where it is celebrated?

Boxing Day is celebrated in only United Kingdom, Ireland, New Zealand, South Africa, Australia, Hong Kong, Canada and some other Commonwealth Countries.

Boxing Day Ireland

In Ireland, the Boxing day is known as “St Stephen’s Day”, who believed Jesus, and that’s why, he was stoned into death.

It is also popular for it’s “Wren Boys” in Ireland, who would go out, and stone Wrens to death. Then carry catch to doors and ask for money.

This unsophisticated act has stopped now, although Wren Boys still go out int heir dresses and ask for money, but for Charity