This article originally appeared in our monthly email issue. Subscribe for full access to Common Good print and digital reads now for just $15 per year. ‍ The Christmas wreath has been a staple of my front door for as long as I can remember. As a child, a wreath made of bells adorned our front porch each year, and as an adult, I’ve even tried my hand at making my own evergreen wreath or two. Year after year, even if we never got around to hanging the Christmas lights, or the tree inside was half bare, there was always a wreath. The wreath has come to be a symbol of joy, hope and promise. But for centuries, the wreath was both a symbol of pride and worldly success and an arcana tinged with anxiety of what was to come. Millennia ago, when the wreath found its beginning, it came with a

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