From the first advent, electric Advent candles light up many of our windows, both at home and in the workplace. They come in a number of colors and shapes, the most common being the traditional pyramid-shaped candlestick with seven candles. But how did it start, and when?
A pile of broken Christmas tree lights and a brilliant idea in combination with thrift and security thinking gave rise to a new invention, the electric candlestick, in the 1930s.
Electric Advent candles - a Swedish tradition
In the 1930s, the Christmas tree was replaced by a round candlestick with four candles, covered with lingonberry rice. Today, Advent lights are lit in most Swedish homes. A Swedish specialty with no equivalent abroad.
Forgotten Adventists have caused many fires. The safer electric candlestick was invented by Oskar Andersson, an employee of Philips in Gothenburg. He took advantage of broken Christmas tree lights that the factory received in return and mounted the electric lights in a seven-candle wooden candlestick. Christmas 1934 lit the first candlestick in Oskar Andersson's parents' home. Werner Simonson at Philips developed the electric candle holder for industrial production in 1937.
Illuminated the way to the church
The electric candlestick became a success and shines today in the windows of most Swedish homes. It links to an old Swedish custom of having light in the windows to illuminate the way of the Santa Claus visitors to the church. About one million electric candlesticks are manufactured in Sweden each year. They are exported to Germany, England, Switzerland, Holland, Canada and USA.
What about the four candle Advent candle holder? (click on the image)