Christmas decorations often feature wooden nutcracker soldiers – and people are just learning the real purpose behind them.
It turns out it's been in our faces the entire time with their self-explanatory names: to crack nuts.
The blissfully unaware have since turned to social media with their newfound discovery.
"I DIDN'T KNOW NUTCRACKERS WERE USED TO CRACK NUTS," one passionate Twitter user penned, while another reiterated: "I was today years old when I realised that nutcrackers are actually used to cracknuts…"
Meanwhile, a third wrote: "You’re telling me that nutcrackers can actually crack nuts?"
The news has since spread to TikTok, with one user dedicating a video to the cause, writing: "I prob sound so stupid but my mind was blown when I found out yesterday."
The oldest known metal nutcracker dates to the third or fourth century B.C. and is currently on display at a museum in Tarent, Italy. It wasn't until the 15th century that English and French wood carvers carved out intricate wooden models.
The standing nutcracker, described as "a misshaped little man, in whose mouth the nut, by means of a lever or screw, is cracked open," didn't come along until the 19th century, according to the Nutcracker Museum.
In 1872 Wilhelm Fuchtner, known as the father of the nutcracker, created the first commercial production of nutcrackers, with many following a similar design.
As reported by UK Christmas World, according to German folklore, "nutcrackers were given as keepsakes to bring luck to the family and protect the home. It is said that they represent strength and power that watch over the family keeping evil spirits and danger away."
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