What is Boxing Day?


King Wenceslas didn’t start Boxing Day, but the Church of England might have.

During Advent, Anglican parishes displayed a box into which churchgoers put their monetary donations. On the day after Christmas, the boxes were broken open and their contents distributed among the poor, thus giving rise to the term Boxing Day.


Even though TIME doesn’t answer its own headline question, the article still might be instructive to our American friends who have heard about “this weird Canadian Holiday”.

  • Guest

    If by ‘Canadian’ you mean ‘everywhere except America’, then yes.

  • rmcq

    Once again, it’s the US that is weird. Australia, Canada, the UK. All have Boxing Day.

    • Not weird. Just not part of the British Commonwealth where Boxing Day is common.

    • SockRolid

      Canadian currency features portraits of the Queen of England. As does Australian currency. Pretty weird for supposedly sovereign nations.