Google has a new doodle that says ’Tis the season when you put your cursor on it:
What is the origin of this usage? or even the contraction ’tis?
There is a popular carol called “Deck the Halls” or “Deck the Hall” that has this line. Can we say that ’Tis the season originates from this carol or does it go far back?
’Tis the season to be jolly,
Fa la la la la la la la la.
It typically refers to the time before Christmas, which can be defined as anywhere from October to December 24th.
'Tis is a contraction of it is. I think these kind of contractions are archaic but it is still used in stock uses like:
’Twas the night before Christmas
’Tis the season
Etymonline doesn’t have much to say about the origin of this contraction:
mid-15c., contraction of it is.
Is it possible to find the origin and first usage of this contraction?