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Christmas Ghosts: The Ghosts of Christmas Eve and Christmas Day

Updated on June 1, 2013
kittythedreamer profile image

Kitty has had paranormal experiences her entire life. These experiences have fueled her passion to write about all things supernatural.


Christmas is Coming, Are The Christmas Ghosts A-stirring?

When we think of the Christmas holiday season, we think of warm fires, happy families, presents galore and food that fills our bellies. We don't necessarily think about the presence of ghosts, but guess what? Ghosts are still around, some are even more active on Christmas itself.

I'm not talking about the three ghosts in Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" either. For centuries, Christmas has been celebrated as a joyful and loving time to gather with family, so why would there be tales of ghosts on Christmas Eve? In fact, a Victorian England tradition of Christmas was indeed to gather around a fire and to tell ghost stories. Think of the Christmas song "It's The Most Wonderful Time of the Year" and the verse that says, "there'll be scary ghost stories and tales of the glorious Christmases of long long ago..."

The tradition of telling ghost stories on Christmas probably originated with the ancient Celts, who celebrated Christmas as something else entirely...the celebration of the Winter Solstice or what many now call "Yule". It was believed by the ancient Celts that on certain nights of the year the dead could come through the veil between the worlds to visit their loved ones. Is it possible that the Winter Solstice (being the longest night of the year) was one of these spiritual nights to the ancient Celts? It is a very likely possibility, and that is probably how the Victorian England tradition of telling ghost stories at Christmas began.

But is there truth to the old Christmas ghosts stories? Let's see just how spooky the Christmas holiday season can really be...

Christmas Ghosts: The White Lady of Cornwall

In England, a recurring haunting on the night of the Winter Solstice makes itself known on a yearly basis. This Christmas ghost is known as the "White Lady of Cornwall". As I've mentioned, she doesn't haunt the site on Christmas Eve or even Christmas Day, but on the day and/or night of the Winter Solstice (the 21st/22nd of December).

The vision of a White Lady ghost haunts the Lower Boscaswell village of Cornwall. The lady is said to be beautiful, as white as a ghost (no wonder) and she has been said to hold a blood red rose between her lips. The White Lady ghost of Cornwall appears briefly and then walks "into the fogou", according to local legend and eyewitnesses. The superstition surrounding the White Lady ghost of Cornwall is that if one sees her, misfortune will soon follow. Who is this Christmas ghost of Cornwall? No one has quite figured that out, though she has been around for centuries so the locals say...

Christmas Ghosts: Anne Boleyn

Anne Boleyn was suspected to have been a witch and evil woman by Henry VIII. She was also his second wife and a dedicated wife and Queen of England. Unfortunately, despite Anne's dedication to her husband and country's success and well-being, King Henry VIII had Anne Boleyn beheaded after trying her for witchcraft and betrayal (he claimed she had cheated on him with her relative among other horrible accusations).

Anne Boleyn's ghost is said to haunt the Tower of London and a few other famous places in England, but Anne Boleyn's Christmas ghost is said to haunt Hever Castle. Hever Castle was Anne Boleyn's childhood home, and probably the place where she was the most happiest in her life. It is here that people have said to see the Christmas ghost of Anne Boleyn walking and talking under a large oak tree on the property. Her Christmas ghost is then said to walk across the bridge and toss a sprig of holly into the water.

Does Anne Boylen's ghost haunt Hever Castle on Christmas because that is where her most joyful Christmas memories flourished? It's quite possible...anything is possible on Christmas Eve.

Christmas Ghosts: Grandpa Came to Visit...and More Ghostly Family Members

Many of the American Christmas Ghost stories aren't of White Lady ghosts haunting bridges and cottages or of beheaded Queens of England, American Christmas ghosts tend to be stories of passed loved ones who have come to visit their family on the most important family night of the year...Christmas.

There is one story of a woman who was pregnant in the 1970's, and upon moving into her new home and setting up the Christmas tree with her husband noticed her mother sitting in a rocking chair in the corner of the family room. The Christmas ghost of the woman's mother just sat there, rocking and smiling at the two of them. To make sure she wasn't seeing things or losing her mind, she mentioned the specter to her husband...and her husband confirmed that he was seeing the exact same site of the Christmas ghost of her mother in the rocking chair.

Other haunting stories of Christmas ghosts of deceased children visiting their families on Christmas Eve and standing by the Christmas tree abound throughout the United States. Are these Christmas ghosts of children simply waiting to share the Christmas joy with their family once again? Perhaps they're waiting to open up their presents...Christmas presents which they'll never open once again.

Pictures have been taken at Christmas time by millions of families throughout the United States, some turning out to show spooky mists and figures of what appear to be grandparents or other deceased loved ones.

It is my belief that sometimes our loved ones can return to visit us...and perhaps the best night to do this is on Christmas Eve. Should we be afraid of Christmas ghosts or simply welcome them to join us in our merriments on Christmas?


Submit a Comment

  • bearnmom profile image

    Laura L Scotty 3 years ago from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

    While you speak of Ghosts that haunt the Christmas tide, I've written my poem for Christmas about the Italian belief that Christ comes back on Christmas Eve and visits. I wont retell the belief here but look it up -- it's my "Candles Are Lit" poem.

  • kittythedreamer profile image

    Nicole Canfield 3 years ago from the Ether

    I hope she's okay too. Haven't heard from her in quite a while.

  • profile image

    thedavemyster 3 years ago

    Dear kittythedreamer,

    As someone who fosters rescue kitties, I must say I like the moniker. I like this article; I found it very interesting as I was totally unaware of the Christmas ghost story tradition. Thank you.

    take care,


    P.S. I noticed that like me, you were a follower of OldWitchcraft; I came back from some surgery, and noticed her hub pages are all gone; I hope she's OK; I miss conversing with her. Thanks again.

  • kittythedreamer profile image

    Nicole Canfield 4 years ago from the Ether

    bearnmom - Wow, what a wonderful story. It is encouraging and comforting to know that our loved ones are still with us, even after death. Thanks for sharing and Happy Holidays!

  • bearnmom profile image

    Laura L Scotty 4 years ago from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

    Wonderful tales of sightings. I hope to see my loved ones. Although it wasn't Christmas Eve, my friend woke to see her grandfather at the foot of her bed so I know these sightings are real.

  • kittythedreamer profile image

    Nicole Canfield 4 years ago from the Ether

    Cherish77 - That is very well possible, my friend. Blessings and Happy Holidays.

  • Cherish77 profile image

    Cherish77 4 years ago

    Great Hub, I have facination for the paranormal, and I believe that my Grandma watches over us at Christmas as it was one of her favorite holidays.

  • kittythedreamer profile image

    Nicole Canfield 4 years ago from the Ether

    hecate-horus - I never did either, until I found these stories. Thanks for the read. Blessings and Yuletide joy.

    Nell - Thanks so much!

    cryptid - That's a good point with the darker spirits, I never thought of that. I might have to explore that theory a bit.

  • cryptid profile image

    cryptid 4 years ago from Earth

    I agree it makes sense that human spirits would feel the need for closeness and joy just like we living folks do at Christmas time. I also wonder if darker entities might see it as a time to work their ways, especially since many people feel depressed around the Holidays.

    Great Hub as always. I would have told you that last year, but I wasn't here yet. :)

  • Nell Rose profile image

    Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

    What a great hub! never thought about ghosts at Christmas, but it does make sense, loved it! voted up! nell

  • hecate-horus profile image

    hecate-horus 4 years ago from Rowland Woods

    Great and unique hub...people don't usually associate ghosts with Christmas. I've never given much thought to that song line, "and scary ghost stories.." but now it makes sense. Thanks for giving us a different perspective of Yuletime! :)

  • kittythedreamer profile image

    Nicole Canfield 4 years ago from the Ether

    Jeannie - Very good point about if the person really enjoyed the holidays while alive...I actually never thought of that. I found it interesting that certain ghosts only show up on certain days, particularly on christmas. Thanks for reading!

  • Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie InABottle 4 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    Thank you for sharing the ghostly side of Christmas. I get bored hearing about jingle bells and that type of thing. I would much rather hear about ghosts. I would think it would be very likely spirits would want to participate in Christmas. I think this would especially be the case if that person really enjoyed the holidays while he or she was alive.

  • kittythedreamer profile image

    Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Muldania - As do I! Sounds like some wonderful recommendations, I'll have to check them out. Thanks for sharing!

  • profile image

    Muldania 5 years ago

    I enjoy ghost stories at Christmas. You might be interested in a series of ghost stories produced by the BBC in the late '60s and early '70s entitled 'A Ghost Story for Christmas.' They are mostly the stories of M. R. James, but includes 'The Signalman' by Dickens. Another Christmas favourite is 'The Woman in Black' which is available on Youtube. My favourite is 'Whistle and I'll Come to You.'

  • kittythedreamer profile image

    Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Jean - I would think that would be an awesome life! Thanks!

    Seafarer Mama - So glad you found it touching. Merry Christmas.

  • Seafarer Mama profile image

    Karen Szklany Gault 5 years ago from New England

    Hi Kitty,

    Wow. Beautiful hub. Very touching. Thanks for sharing. I know that we tend to think of loved ones fondly around Christmas, and this may bring their spirit closer to us... and quite literally so. :0) The part about the visitation of the spirit of children was especially touching. Going to give my daughter a big hug and kiss right now!

  • Jean Bakula profile image

    Jean Bakula 5 years ago from New Jersey


    Maybe you lived as part of Anne Boleyn's court! I'm attending a Metaphysical fair tomorrow. Although I've been an Astrologer forever, I never learned how to do the past life regressions. I like and trust my latest teacher in the courses my husband & I are taking, and she does them. Not through Astrology charts, but she's talented and very psychic, judging on what I've seen in our classes in the last few months. We are doing subconscious and unconscious mind experiements, and astral travel. Each person gathers a few things together and "sends" psychic messages to the classmates so we all try to "see" what their objects are. I saw an old fashioned wooden playing block with painted alphabet letters in the teacher's office. She acted blank, then sure enough when she got home she said her grandchidren left one out when they cleaned up! I'll let you know if I do the regression or not!

  • kittythedreamer profile image

    Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Thank you, pmccray!

    vampgyrl420 - So glad you liked it! :)

  • VAMPGYRL420 profile image

    Windy Grace Mason 5 years ago from The Eastern Shore of Virginia, Maryland and Delaware, U.S.A.

    Amazing hub, Kitty!!! Voted up!!! :D

  • pmccray profile image

    pmccray 5 years ago from Utah

    Excellent hub, timely and interesting subject matter. Voted up, marked interesting.

  • kittythedreamer profile image

    Nicole Canfield 5 years ago from the Ether

    Jean - Thanks for sharing the recommendation on Anne Boleyn...I'll definitely check it out! Love learning about Anne Boleyn...though I'm not quite sure what draws me to her stories. Thanks for reading!

  • Jean Bakula profile image

    Jean Bakula 5 years ago from New Jersey

    Really interesting stories I have not heard! As for Anne Boleyn, read Threads by Nell Gavin if you have the time. It's a great story about how Anne and Henry VIII have known each other through many incarnations together. Anne's spiritual guide insists that in her next incarnation, she has to forgive Henry for beheading her. I loved it, so creative and you'll be surprised at some of the other situations they encountered, when they could just be themselves and not members of the Court.