150 Victorian Christmas cards: Antique holiday greetings from the 1800s range from quaint to extremely weird

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Victorian Christmas cards Antique holiday from quaint to weird

Note: This article may feature affiliate links, and purchases made may earn us a commission at no extra cost to you. Find out more here.

You probably didn’t expect Victorian Christmas cards to be so unsettling

Um, our ancestors were weird, y’all. I mean, maybe we’re missing some context that would make these Victorian Christmas cards make sense (see the inexplicable roast beef head, petulant boy in a teapot, and dead bird cards — on Christmas cards — just for three examples!).

But nah, I don’t think they ever really made sense… and/or those people had extremely dark senses of humor, far beyond what I’d realized. 

While it’s true that many of these holiday cards are pretty and quaint, but basic — exactly what you would expect from the romantic and dramatic Victorians — there’s enough strangeness here to add some truly random excitement to your 150-card scroll. Merry, merry! -BB

Victorian Christmas card of a family by the fireplace

Victorian Christmas card - Family by the fireplace

DON’T MISS: Printable Christmas coloring fun for kids


Christmas card with children caroling inside a star from the 1800s

1800s Christmas card with kids inside a star (1)


Antique Christmas bubbles greeting card from the late 1800s

Christmas Bubbles of every hue 
Fair, bright bubbles of friendship true
Such dear friend I send to you Happiness, Joy, Contentment

Antique Christmas bubbles greeting card from the 1800s


A young child getting warm by the fire on an antique Christmas card

Antique Christmas card - Young child getting warm by the fire

ALSO SEE: Two dozen fashionable Victorian fireplaces from the 1880s


Weird Victorian Christmas card with a petulant boy in a teapot

Weird Victorian Christmas card with a boy in a teapot


Vintage Santa Claus card with dancing socks

Well, here we are again! A Merry Christmas to you all, both big and small! 
On with the dance boys, there’s a good time coming!

Antique Santa Claus - Christmas card


Two antique Christmas postcards from the 19th century

Christmas comes but once a year – and when it comes it brings good cheer!

Two antique Christmas postcards from the 19th cnetury


Cute antique Christmas card with flower and butterflies (1800s)

Cute antique Christmas card with flower and butterflies (1800s)


Creepy and strange Victorian Christmas card with bugs and a frog

Creepy and strange Victorian Christmas card with bugs and a frog


Antique religious Christmas cards from the 19th century

Antique religious Christmas cards from the 19th century (1)


Card from Victorian age – Santa putting kid in a sack

Vintage Christmas card from Victorian age - Santa putting kid in a sack


Children at Christmastime (1887)

Children at Christmastime (1887)


Victorian children dancing around a decorated Christmas tree

Antique Victorian Christmas card - kids around decorated tree (2)


Merry Christmas and Happy New Year greeting card from the 1900s

The glory of the world is come, and fit is we find a roome to welcome him. The nobler part of all the house here is the heart.

May you have all this time bequeaths of comfort and content. This my sampler is with greeting sent with hollie and ivie leaves.

Antique Victorian Christmas card (1880s)


Saint Nicholas in a cart being pulled by geese (1880s)

Saint Nicholas in a cart being pulled by geese (1880s)


“Under the holly bough” A Victorian Christmas poem

Ye who have loved each other; sister and friend and brother in the fast fading year.
Mother and sire and child, young man and maiden mild, come gather here.
As memory shall ponder, each past unbroken vow.
Old loves and younger wooing, are sweet in renewing…
Under the holly bough.

Under the holly bough - Victorian Christmas poem


Antique strange roast beef Christmas card

Antique strange roast beef Victorian Christmas card

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Victorian greeting card of Santa in a Christmas pudding 

Vintage Santa in a Christmas pudding - Victorian greeting card


5 small antique Christmas cards

5 small antique Christmas cards


Warm old-fashioned scene of a home decorated at Christmas

Warm old-fashioned scene of home decorated at Christmas

ALSO SEE: Vintage Homes Adult Coloring Book #2: Classic Victorian Houses


Happy Victorian winter scene in the snow 

Happy winter scene with snow fun - Victorian Christmas


Victorian-era Christmas card with angels

A happy Christmas - Antique card with angels


Creepy Victorian Santa with a pinecone man – Vintage card

Creepy Victorian Santa with a pinecone man - Vintage card


An old-fashioned Christmas dance greeting card

An old-fashioned Christmas dance


Old Victorian card with a scary-looking clown eating a pie

Old Victorian card with a scary-looking clown eating a pie


A Happy Christmas – Flower girls

A Happy Christmas - Flower girls


Christian seasonal cards from the 19th century

Antique religious Christmas cards from the 19th century (2)


Antique illustration of Santa Claus delivering a doll to a little girl

Antique illustration of Santa Claus delivering a doll to a little girl


Christmas Eve poems by Celia Thaxter

Happy Eve and holy hour
When man’s hope broke into flower
When God’s promise was fulfilled
Doubts were cancelled, fears were stilled
When the Word Incarnate came
Clothed in music, winged with flame!

Christmas Eve - Life's highest goods


1800s Christmas card with cherubs & lambs

1800s Christmas card with kids inside a star (2)

ALSO SEE: Sweet antique baby portraits: 24 cute cabinet card photos of baby boys & girls in the 1800s


Christmas hymns from the 1800s

Christmas hymns from the 1800s


Creepy Victorian birds with torches to lighten Christmas (1800s)

Creepy Victorian birds with torches to lighten Christmas (1800s)


Old-fashioned family at home on Christmas (19th century card)

Old-fashioned family at home on Christmas (19th century card)


Pretty old-fashioned Christmas cards from the 1800s

Pretty old-fashioned Christmas cards from the 1800s


A really bizarre old Christmas card with one frog mugging another

A really bizarre old Christmas card with one frog mugging another


Cute Xmas card — Little girl and a puppy (1800s)

Cute old Christmas card - Little girl and a puppy (1800s)


Merry Victorian Christmas in Dreamland

Merry Christmas in Dreamland - Victorian card


Weird creepy snowman card from the 1800s

Weird creepy snowman card from the 1800s


Mini-Santas bringing winter — Drawings from the 1800s

Mini-Santas decorating for Halloween - Drawings from the 1800s (1)

Mini-Santas decorating for Halloween - Drawings from the 1800s (2)


Sweet robins wish you a Happy Christmas (1800s)

Antique window with birds - Happy Christmas(1800s)


Three antique biblical Christmas greeting cards

Three antique biblical Christmas greeting cards


Creepy old Merry Christmas card – Candle and apple kissing (1800s)

ALSO SEE: How to make old-fashioned apple head dolls: Get vintage shrunken apple DIY craft directions, details & photos

Creepy old Merry Christmas card - Candle and apple kissing (1800s)


19th century Merry Christmas cards with angels

 

19th century Merry Christmas cards with angels


Funny cute cat Christmas cards from the 1800s

Funny cute cat Christmas cards from the 1800s


“A Merrie Christmas and a glad New Year” – Matching Victorian cards

Merrie Christmas - Vintage Victorian greeting card

Merrie Christmas to each and all of your - Vintage card


A wooden puppet left in the snow – Old-style Christmas card

A wooden puppet left in the snow - Old-style Christmas card


Victorian Christmas card of kittens watching Punch and Judy

Humorous Victorian Christmas cards with cartoon animals (4)


Humorous Victorian Christmas cards with cartoon animals

Humorous Victorian Christmas cards with cartoon animals (5)


4 Old fashioned sepia Christmas cards

Vintage Christmas holiday greetings - Sepia (2)

Vintage Christmas holiday greetings - Sepia (1)


Little boy with a goat who has come to greet him – Antique card

Little boy with a goat who has come to greet him - Antique card


Old holiday postcard depicting winter scenes

Old winter scenes - holiday postcard (1)

Old winter scenes - holiday postcard (2)


Victorian children sleeping in their beds with Christmas toys

Victorian child sleeping in bed with Christmas toys waiting (1)

Victorian child sleeping in bed with Christmas toys waiting (2)


3 antique Victorian Christmas cards

3 antique Victorian Christmas cards


Merry Christmas card from the 1800s

Somebody told me I must say 
That “here’s much love for Christmas Day”
But then I could not bring it all
Somebody says I am too small.

Antique Prang Merry Christmas card from the 1800s

MORE: How Victorian-era kids got dressed up for Christmas in the 1890s


Antique Christmas cards — St Nick and Merry Xmas

Antique Christmas cards - St Nick and Merry Xmas


An Asian-themed antique Christmas postcard

An Asian-themed antique Christmas postcard


Merry Christmas card with old-fashioned bell

Merry Christmas card with old-fashioned bell


Antique Victorian floral Christmas postcards

Antique Victorian Christmas postcards (2)

Antique Victorian Christmas postcards (1)


4 bookmark-sized Christmas cards from the 1800s

Antique bookmark-size Christmas cards from the 1800s (2)

Antique bookmark-size Christmas cards from the 1800s (1)


A Merry Christmas – Graphic design card with colorful patterned doorway

A Merry Christmas - Graphic design card with colorful patterned doorway


Virgin Mary Christmas card & poem from the Victorian era

A spotless maiden bears the babe
Foretold by Gabriel’s word
She carries on her virgin breast
Her savior and her lord

Victorian Virgin Mary Christmas card


Glory to God in the highest — Old Christmas postcard

Glory to God in the highest - Old Christmas postcard


Children from the early 1900s, ready to celebrate

Cute antique 1800s Christmas card (2)


Christmas bells

ALSO SEE: 3 ways to make an old-fashioned Nesselrode pudding dessert with chestnuts

Cute antique 1800s Christmas card (1)


Young Christmas carolers and angels holiday card

Hark! The carol heavenward floats;
Listen to the liquid notes:
Listen well, and you may hear
Song of Cherubs hovering near.

Young Christmas carolers - late 1800s


Antique Christmas postcard of two girls and their cat

Antique Christmas postcard - Two girls with a cat

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Cute Victorian Christmas postcards with children

Cute Victorian Christmas postcards with children


Christmas postcard with old-fashioned children

Victorian Christmas postcard with old-fashioned children


Victorian Christmas postcards with children

Victorian Christmas postcards with children


Family with presents on Christmas morning (1880s)

Family with presents on Christmas morning (1880s)

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Humorous Victorian Christmas cards with cartoon animals

Humorous Victorian Christmas cards with cartoon animals (6)

Humorous Victorian Christmas cards with cartoon animals (1)


A Victorian Christmas message on a postcard

Bitterly chill is the winter wind, biting our cheeks as we go;
Gray is the sky, and the silent fields are white with December’s snow
But the message we bear makes warm our hearts
With the joy of the Christmas Tide: 
It is “May God’s grace, and Christ’s sweet peace, with you and yours abide”

A Victorian Christmas message


Victorian Christmas card featuring an old-fashioned church 

Victorian church and girl with Christmas toys


Two illustrated Christmas postcards from the 19th century

Two illustrated Christmas postcards from the 19th century

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Season’s greeting card of an angel and dove

A Victorian angel


Polar bear and penguins, Victorian-style

Polar bear and penguins, Victorian-style


Old Christmas card from 1877 with the new year 1878

I wish thee a bright and a happy New Year, A Season of pleasure unclouded.

A twelve month that rocks not a sigh or a tear, In which all known joys shall be crowded.

Old Christmas card from 1877 with new year 1878


Old Victorian choir singers postcard

Old Victorian choir singers - Christmas card


“Peace on earth” — Child choir in front of a Victorian Christmas tree

Peace on earth - Old choir and Victorian Christmas tree


Victorian twins with Christmas pudding

Victorian twins with some Christmas pudding

SEE MORE: Want old-fashioned plum pudding? Try 3 rich & delicious classic recipes


Children and their dog playing on a sled in winter (1880s)

Vintage kids playing on a sled in winter (1880s)


Winter birds on a branch at Christmastime

WInter birds on a branch at Christmastime


And a strange old Victorian Christmas card with a dead bird on it

Strange old Victorian Christmas card with a dead bird on it


Antique Christmas card of kids around a decorated tree

Antique Victorian Christmas card - kids around decorated tree (1)


Victorian holiday card  — Kids collecting a Christmas tree

Antique Christmas card - kids cutting down a tree


Medieval style illustrations featured on a Victorian Christmas card set

Antique Victorian Christmas card - Medieval illustration

Antique Victorian Christmas cards - King of our heart


“A load of Christmas greens” — Antique holiday card

A load of Christmas greens - Antique card


Folding Victorian Christmas cards (1880s)

Mirth, friendship, love and light
Shall crown the winter night.
And every glad you’re welcome
Christmas tide

Folding Victorian Christmas card - 1880s (2)
Folding Victorian Christmas card - 1880s (1)

MORE: What Christmas dinner at the White House was like during the Victorian era (1889)


Vintage card of birds resting in a tree during snowfall

Merry Christmas - Vintage card with birds on a winter tree branch and snow


Humorous Victorian Christmas cards with cartoon animals

Humorous Victorian Christmas cards with cartoon animals (2)

Humorous Victorian Christmas cards with cartoon animals (3)


Vintage “Glad tidings” Christmas card from the Victorian era

Vintage glad tidings Christmas card from the Victorian era


Vintage Xmas poetry card from the late 1800s

Christmas again! Christmas again!
With its holly berries bright and red; 
They gleam in the wood, they grow by the lane
O has not Christmas A joyful tread?

Vintage Christmas again verse card from the late 1800s


“Wishing you a Merry Christmas!” card set from the 1800s

Victorian Christmas cards from the 1800s


Victorian Christmas card of a young ice skater

Victorian Christmas card from the 1880s


Old-fashioned embroidery-style Merry Christmas card 

Embroidery-style Merry Christmas card - Victorian era


“Peace, Goodwill to me and you” Antique holiday card

Victorian Christmas card - mother with daughters


1800s Mother with children on Christmas postcard

Victorian Christmas card - Mother with children

MORE: See what antique school supplies & educational materials were like in the olden days


Victorian calligraphy Christmas and New Year greeting card

Victorian Christmas card - Christmas and new year


Three small antique Christmas cards in color

Two small antique Christmas cards in folor
Vintage greeting card - Merrie Xmas (1800s)


Pretty antique Merry Christmas card (1800s)

ALSO SEE: Vintage Women Coloring Book #4: Victorian Fashion Scenes from the Late 1800s

Pretty antique Merry Christmas card (1800s)


“A Merry Christmas!” Antique holiday postcard

Merry Christmas - antique holiday postcard


Pretty Victorian stained glass window design for Christmas

Pretty Victorian window design - Merry Christmas card


“Sweets to the sweet” Old-fashioned Christmas postcard

Decorating the Christmas tree in the Victorian era


Old Victorian era Christmas card designs

Old Victorian era Christmas card designs


Antique Victorian Christmas card – family playing music

Antique Victorian Christmas card - family playing music


Antique sprite-elf winter holiday card from the 1880s

Antique sprite-elf winter holiday card from the 1880s (2)

Antique sprite-elf winter holiday card from the 1880s (1)


Old Christmas carolers from the 19th century

Old Christmas card from the 19th century

ALSO SEE: Victorian etiquette: 129 rules that men were supposed to follow


Antique holiday outfits – Victorian Christmas cards

Antique holiday outfits - Victorian Christmas cards


Antique 1880s Christmas card of mother and child

Antique 1880s Christmas card - woman with a baby


Antique 19th century Nativity scenes on postcards

Antique 19th century Christmas cards - Nativity scenes


A Merry Christmas! – Antique holiday postcard

A Merry Christmas - antique holiday postcard


Victorian farmland Christmas card from the 1870s

A Merry Christmas - Victorian Christmas card from the 1870s


Old-fashioned Christmas card with a illustration of an owl

Antique owl - Merry Christmas card


Victorian lady dressed up for Christmas service greeting card

Antique 1880s Christmas card - woman at church

DON’T MISS THIS: 10 Victorian Christmas side dishes from the 1800s – most of which actually sound pretty good

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