First Christmas Tree and Other Stories

First Christmas Tree and Other Stories

by Henry Van Dyke
     
 

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For over one hundred years, the writings of Henry Van Dyke have been lovingly passed down from generation to generation. His Christmas stories, especially, are as resonant today as when the Presbyterian minister first read them to his New York City congregation in the late 1890s. In this volume of Christmas stories and prayers, we read of courage, generosity, and

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Overview

For over one hundred years, the writings of Henry Van Dyke have been lovingly passed down from generation to generation. His Christmas stories, especially, are as resonant today as when the Presbyterian minister first read them to his New York City congregation in the late 1890s. In this volume of Christmas stories and prayers, we read of courage, generosity, and the triumph of light over darkness, from “The First Christmas Tree,” a magical tale of the Thunder Oak and the false god Thor, to the lyrical story of “The Christmas Angel in the Country beyond the Stars.”

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Van Dyke's most famous Christmas story, "The Story of the Other Wise Man," is beloved of generations of readers, and this volume offers two more holiday stories from the 19th-century Presbyterian minister. The opening yarn, "The First Christmas Tree," is the better of the two, portraying in dark detail an eighth-century struggle between foresters who are clinging to the old gods and solstice festivals, and a heroic Christian who journeys far to teach them about the celebration of birth of Christ. Van Dyke's descriptions can be startling and memorable, as when he depicts "the eerie woodland, somber and limitless" that the party must pass through, or the oaks' "branches twisted and knotted as if in rage." The second story is more didactic, centering around a group of angels who sermonize to one another about what should be done about the troubles of the world. The small gift book format, woodcut illustrations and two-color design will appeal to holiday gift-givers. (Sept. 1) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781557259844
Publisher:
Paraclete Press
Publication date:
09/01/2011
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
112
File size:
1 MB

Meet the Author

Henry Van Dyke, American clergyman, educator, and author, was born in Germantown, Pennsylvania, in 1852. Educated in theology at Princeton University and in Berlin, he served as a pastor for twenty years, first in Newport, Rhode Island, and then at Brick Presbyterian Church in New York City. In 1900 he became professor of English Literature at Princeton, and from 1913 to 1916 he was United States minister to the Netherlands. Later, as naval chaplain he was awarded the Legion of Honor. The Story of the Other Wise Man, written in 1896, and The First Christmas Tree, 1897, were first read aloud to his congregation in New York. His Christmas sermons, essays, poetry, and short stories, revealing a classical education combined with a charming, down-to-earth sensibility, have made him a popular and enduring writer. Van Dyke died in 1933.

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