The first of twelve traditions I will discuss is the Lord of Misrule.
The start to the Christmas season began with the appointment of the Lord of Misrule. This "Lord" was generally a peasant who was appointed by the local Parrish. He led the celebrations, presiding over large drinking parties and feasting, including the "Feast of Fools." In this role reversal, the Lord of Misrule mocked the King, ruling in his stead for 12 days. At the end of the 12 Days of Christmas, his rule came to an end and the King "resumed" his duties.
Another form of the Lord of Misrule surrounded Twelfth Night. Twelfth Night was the last night of the 12 Days of Christmas, and was marked by a large feast. During the feast, a bean was baked into a cake. The person who foudn the bean became the "Lord of Misrule," and presided over the banquet. Roles were reversed, with the King and nobles becoming "peasants." At midnight, the Lord of Misrule's reign ended and the world returned to normal.