Last Update 23:41
Wednesday, 22 January 2020
PHOTO GALLERY: Christmas trees around the world

Christmas holiday lights hang from trees in the ancient quarter of Bab-Sharqi in Damascus, Syria, December 15, 2015 (Reuters)
Members of a Jordanian police band perform during a celebration of the lighting of a 12-metre-tall Christmas tree at a Lutheran Church, which stands on a baptism site on the Jordan River, in Shouneh December 13, 2015 (Reuters)
Visitors (bottom C) are silhouetted as they pose for pictures in front of an illuminated Christmas tree near Malaysia's iconic twin-towers (back) at a shopping mall in Kuala Lumpur on December 21, 2015 (AFP)
A Christmas tree is seen at a roundabout in Victoria Island district in Lagos, Nigeria, December 9, 2015 (Reuters)
United States
The U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree stands after the lighting ceremony on Capitol Hill in Washington, United States, December 2, 2015 (Reuters)
A Pakistani woman decorates a Christmas tree for the upcoming Christmas holiday in Peshawar, Pakistan, Monday, Dec. 21, 2015 (AP)
The Vatican Christmas tree is lit up during a ceremony in Saint Peter's Square at the Vatican December 18, 2015 (Reuters)
A Christmas tree is seen through ancient ruins in downtown Rome, Italy, December 10, 2015 (Reuters)
Czech Republic
A Christmas tree is illuminated as the traditional Christmas market opens at the Old Town Square in Prague, Czech Republic, November 28, 2015 (Reuters)
A Christmas tree is pictured at Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, December 15, 2015 (Reuters)
A Christmas tree is displayed to celebrate the upcoming holiday season at a shopping mall in Cairo, Egypt (Photo: Mai Shaheen)
Ivory Coast
An illuminated Christmas tree stands in Plateau, the central business district of Abidjan, Ivory Coast, December 16, 2015 (Reuters)
People skate around a lighted Christmas tree, on a plastic ice rink in front of the St Stephan Basilica, the biggest church in Budapest, on December 21, 2015 (AFP)
A couple hugs while standing near a Christmas tree made out of plastic bins and plastic hampers outside the Museum of History in Monterrey, Mexico, December 4, 2015 (Reuters)
In this photo taken late Saturday, Dec. 12, 2015 photo, people pass by a giant Christmas tree displayed to celebrate the upcoming holiday season at a shopping mall in Beirut, Lebanon (AP)
People watch fireworks during the illumination of a giant Christmas tree at the launch of 2015 Christmas festivities, in front of Muhammad al-Amin Mosque in Beirut, Lebanon, Friday, Dec. 11, 2015 (AP)
People ride a merry-go-round near a Christmas tree at Zawra Park in Baghdad, Iraq, Monday, Dec. 21, 2015 (AP)
A man walks past a Christmas tree on the Manger Square near the Church of the Nativity, revered as the site of Jesus Christ's birth, on December 16, 2015 in the West Bank city of Bethlehem (AFP)
The illuminated Christmas tree stands in the old city in Kaunas, Lithuania, Thursday, Dec. 17, 2015 (AP)
Christmas decorations are seen in front of the Cathedral of Lima, in downtown Lima, Peru, December 7, 2015 (Reuters)
An illuminated Christmas tree is displayed on central Syntagma square as the parliament building is seen in the background in Athens, Greece, December 4, 2015 (Reuters)

The humble Christmas tree has a rich history, from evergreen trees used to symbolise eternal life in Ancient Egypt to tree worship among pagan Europeans. The modern version has its origins in Germany, where the song "O Tannenbaum" is still a festive favourite. 

Today the traditional tree with lights and decorations appears in cities including Washington, Moscow and Beirut. Alternative constructions range from recycled rubbish in Mexico City to old window frames in Rakvere, Estonia. Whatever the shape or size, the message is the same: Merry Christmas. 

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