Tibb's Eve

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Tibb's Eve
Also called Tipp's Eve, Tipsy Eve
Observed by Newfoundlanders
Type Cultural
Significance Beginning of the Christmas season
Observances Drinking and merriment
Date 23 December
Next time 23 December 2017 (2017-12-23)
Frequency Annual
Related to Christmas Eve, Christmas, Advent

Tibb's Eve, also known as Tipp's Eve, Tip's Eve or Tipsy Eve is a celebration held on December 23 originating on the south coast of Newfoundland.[1] Tibb's eve is also widely recognized in other parts of the province of Newfoundland and Labrador.


The wild festivity started sometime around the mid-20th century as the first night during Advent when it was appropriate to have a drink. Advent was a sober, religious time of year and traditionally people would not drink alcohol until Christmas Day at the earliest. Tibb's Eve emerged as an excuse to imbibe two days earlier. The tradition of celebrating Tibb's Eve may be similar to 19th century workers taking Saint Monday off from work.[2]


The word "tibb" is archaic slang for a sexually promiscuous woman. In 17th century English plays Tibb was a common character of a loose-moraled woman used for comic relief. Referring to Saint Tibb was a joke that would go over the head of children who believed her to be a real saint. Similarly, Tibb's Eve was a "non-time" like "the twelfth of never" or "when two Mondays fall together."[2]


  1. ^ "Custom". Newfoundland and Labrador Heritage Website. Newfoundland and Labrador Heritage. Retrieved 15 December 2012. 
  2. ^ a b Herridge, Paul (December 22, 2009). "The Origins of Tibbs Eve". The Southern Gazette. Retrieved 15 December 2012.