“Herod the King, in his raging,
Charged he hath this day
His men of might, in his own sight,
All young children to slay.”
(From The Coventry Carol)
In the Christian calendar, today is the Feast of The Holy Innocents, and you can read the story behind this in Matthew 2:1-18.
It’s a day to remember children suffering cruelty and death, and also for families who have lost or cannot have children. Previous generations were less squeamish about seeing this gruesome theme as an integral part of the Christmas story. We recommend this beautiful post from ‘A Clerk of Oxford’ that delves way back into old English lullabies to remind us that the true Christmas story embodies both grief and joy.