The Illustrated Christmas Cracker by John Julius NorwichFor over 30 years, in lieu of Christmas cards, the distinguished historian John Julius Norwich has been sending friends his Christmas Crackers—personal collections of quirky quotes and literary odds and ends. Every decade, these have been collected into an anthology. Now Quentin Blake has made a selection of his favorite pieces, illustrating them in his own inimitable style. From curious dictionary definitions to Benjamin Franklin’s account of inventing bifocals, this cracker is stuffed with surprising, offbeat, often hilarious gems.
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Best Christmas crackers: Make your holiday season go with a bang, from ?6
Invented in the late s, Christmas crackers have been a British holiday staple for well over a century. Traditionally their contents consisted of a tissue paper hat, a small toy, and a joke or riddle—but nowadays, some luxury crackers include everything from whistles to high-end beauty products, gifts for pets, and even whisky. Read on for some of the more intriguing takes on the British classic to decorate your holiday table with this year. What's inside? No tissue crowns in here! Put one of these crackers under the tree this year for your favorite pup.
We've rounded up some truly unique and quirky Christmas crackers this year, Each cracker contains a different 30ml dram of spirit or liqueur.
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Christmas crackers are festive table decorations that make a snapping sound when pulled opened, and often contain a small gift and a joke. They are part of Christmas celebrations in the United Kingdom , Ireland , and Commonwealth countries such as Australia where they are sometimes known as bon-bons , Canada , New Zealand and South Africa. A cracker consists of a segmented cardboard tube wrapped in a brightly decorated twist of paper with a prize in the middle,  making it resemble an oversized sweet-wrapper. The cracker is pulled apart by two people, each holding an outer chamber, causing the cracker to split unevenly and leaving one person holding the central chamber and prize. Crackers are typically pulled at the Christmas dinner table or at parties.
They originated in the UK and started life as sweets and riddles wrapped in pretty paper. In fact, even without the extremely budget-friendly price point, they would still be a great buy. Substantially sized in pretty silver packaging and eight crackers to a box, useful gifts include post-dinner games and toys, nail clippers, mirrors, picture frames and mini screwdriver sets. Buy now available early November. We enjoyed the loud snap and practical, high quality gifts — these are items to use, not bin, including keyrings, photo frames, luggage tags and fun mini games such as skittles and golf.
If you're looking for Christmas crackers that are far from ordinary, then you've come to the right place. We've rounded up some truly unique offerings this year, from a tin Christmas cracker, to ones filled with miniature bottles of alcohol, and even a cracker that erupts with confetti. Get into the festive spirit with these unique crackers that rain confetti — quite literally! When you pull the cracker, a burst of confetti shoots into the air. These Christmas Cracker tin cans — the same size as a mini can of baked beans — will be the talking point of the table. Doubling up as place settings, these crackers can be opened using the ring-pull, and inside you'll find a paper hat, festive joke, chocolates and a party popper. Each cracker contains a different 30ml dram of spirit or liqueur, a party hat, and a joke.