Une Chasse au Trésor de Noël

Use the links below to find the answers to the following questions about Christmas traditions in France and other French speaking countries.


  1. How do you say "Happy New Year" in French?
  2. When is the Feast Day of St. Nicholas?
  3. In which province did the first Sapin de Noël (Christmas tree) appear in 1521?
  4. According to legend, what do farm animals do at the stroke of midnight on Christmas Eve?
  5. What is a "sweetmeat tree"?
  6. What are tropes?
  7. Père Noël does not have reindeer, what animal does he ‘drive’?
  8. Why is Mass celebrated at midnight?
  9. What’s eaten for the Christmas meal in Burgundy?
  10. In which city did the famous santons of Provence first appear in 1803?
  11. Who is Père Fouettard? What does he do?
  12. What is in the galette served on Epiphany?
  13. Why do Provençal crèches include a woman carrying a black chicken?
  14. What are three possible origins of the word Noël?
  15. When did the first crèches appear in France?
  16. What should one do with a pain calendeau?
  17. How many tablecloths are on the Provençal Christmas table?
  18. What is the réveillon?
  19. What is the main course of Christmas dinner in Alsace?
  20. Why do they traditionally have thirteen desserts at the Christmas dinner in Provence?
  21. What do Parisians prefer to eat or drink for their Christmas dinner? (2-4 things)
  22. What are the three other names for Midnight Mass, Dawn Mass and Christmas Day Mass?
  23. According to the Legend of the Sage Plant, who does the rose have thorns? What other plant is mentioned in the Legend?
  24. Why do they "sow" wheat on cotton wool in Provence on December 4?
  25. What do people put on their heads on Epiphany?


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Thanks to Mary Ann Freeman from Southeastern High School in Augusta, Illinois for questions and links

This page created by: Dianne P. Krause