Christmas crackers have a relatively recent origin. A Victorian confectioner, Tom Smith, visited Paris and noticed bon-bon sweets being sold in colourful twisted paper tubes. He brought the idea back to England and developed it by placing a small love motto and gift inside. The 'snap' was added after he heard a crackling log in his fireplace. It was first known as the Cosaque (Cossack) but was soon replaced by the name cracker. The hat was later added by his son, Walter Smith.
The wearing of festive hats dates back to Roman times and the Saturnalia celebrations.
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