Will the real Santa Claus please stand up.

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Someone tried to convince me that Santa Claus is a mythical figure.Well if that’s the case who puts my presents under the Christmas tree?

Anyhow!

Santa Claus has many names but they all come from the same historical figure,Nikolaos of Myra(aka Nicholas of Bari)

The true story of Santa Claus begins with Nicholas, who was born during the third century in the village of Patara. st-nicholasjpgAt the time the area was Greek and is now on the southern coast of Turkey. His wealthy parents, who raised him to be a devout Christian, died in an epidemic while Nicholas was still young. Obeying Jesus’ words to “sell what you own and give the money to the poor,” Nicholas used his whole inheritance to assist the needy, the sick, and the suffering. He dedicated his life to serving God and was made Bishop of Myra while still a young man. Bishop Nicholas became known throughout the land for his generosity to those in need, his love for children, and his concern for sailors and ships.

A rather offbeat story recounted by Kelly and Rogers, tells of Nicholas visiting a local butcher during a famine. To his surprise, he was served meat. Suspecting the worst, Nicholas proceeded to his host’s cellar, finding three barrels containing three murdered boys in brine. The bishop lost no time in restoring them to life, and “has been a patron of children-in-a-pickle ever since.” His acts of kindness and miracles for children, carried the reputation of Nicholas to the far corners of the Roman Empire.

Some argue that Santa Claus is based on the Norse god, Thor, who was associated with winter and the Yule log and rode on a chariot drawn by goats named Cracker and Gnasher.

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That the historical person of Nicholas became transformed into the kindly Santa Claus from a pagan legend was due to the notoriety he gained by extending a helping hand in the aid of children. His was not an age known for protecting children. Instead they were often left to beg when they lost their parents or lived in poverty.

Other claim he is based on the Germanic god Odin,also known as Wodan.

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 The modern Santa Claus grew out of traditions surrounding the historical Saint Nicholas, the British figure of Father Christmas and the Dutch figure of Sinterklaas (himself also based on Saint Nicholas).

 

Perhaps the most significant aspect of the Nicholas legend was that his story influenced future generations to demonstrate kindness to children, at least once a year. The modern tradition has remained true to the simple bishop of Myra, who devoted his life to helping the poor.

Santa Claus with list

 

Although the traditions are the same there are differences in the different configurations of Saint Nick. I’ll just go through a few of them there are too may to list them all(trust me I checked it twice)

Sinterklaas

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Unlike Santaclaus,Sinterklaas does not travel from the North pole by sleigh and reindeer. No Sinterklaas likes his comfort, he therefor travels from Spain on a steamboat.

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And once he arrives at his destination in the Netherlands he gets on a white horse called Amerigo.

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Rather then doing a last minute Christmas rush Sinterklaas delivers his presents on the 5th of December. Saint Nicholas died on the 6th of December, so the presents are delivered on the eve of St Nicholas’s death.

Father Christmas

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Father Christmas is the traditional English name for the personification of Christmas. Although now known as a Christmas gift-bringer, and normally considered to be synonymous with American culture’s Santa Claus which is now known worldwide, he was originally part of an unrelated and much older English folkloric tradition. The recognisably modern figure of the English Father Christmas developed in the late Victorian period, but Christmas had been personified for centuries before then.

Below are a few more Christmas figures

Joulupukki-Finland

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Mikulás-Hungary

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Ded Moroz-Russia and other Eastern European countries.

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An Irish tradition states that the relics of Saint Nicholas are also reputed to have been stolen from Myra by local Norman crusading knights in the 12th century and buried near Thomastown, County Kilkenny, where a stone slab marks the site locally believed to be his grave.

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I hope you all get the presents you are hoping for.

Regardless of who delivers them. When I was a kid I got them from this man(who was actually my real dad)

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Merry Christmas

Santa's Sleigh House

 

 

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Sinterklaas -(Dutch St Nicholas)in WWII

The photo was shot during wartime, 6 December 1944

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(Sinterklaas, St-Nicholas in the Netherlands and Belgium, arrives in Rucphen, a town near Roosendaal (The Netherlands). Normally Sinterklaas arrives on a white horse but this he uses a Sherman-tank.)

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Sinterklaas or Sint-Nicolaas is a mythical figure with legendary, historical and folkloric origins based on Saint Nicholas(He is the primary source of the popular Christmas icon of Santa Claus). Other names for the figure include De Sint (“The Saint”), De Goede Sint (“The Good Saint”), and De Goedheiligman (“The Good Holy Man”)

Nowadays this mythical figure is causing a bit of controversy with the Political Correct brigade, they claim this MYTHICAL figure and his MYTHICAL servant, who happens to be black is promoting racism and glorifying slavery, the point they are forgetting is they are mythical .It is basically the equivalent of saying that Santa Claus is  exploiting small people and is  guilty of child labor.But I am not going to focus on that but rather on the WWII era.

Sinterklaas is celebrated annually with the giving of gifts on 5 December, the night before Saint Nicholas Day in the Northern Netherlands and on the morning of 6 December, Saint Nicholas Day itself, in the (Roman Catholic) southern provinces, Belgium, Luxembourg and Northern France (French Flanders, Lorraine and Artois). He is also well known in territories of the former Dutch Empire, including Aruba, Bonaire, Curaçao, and Suriname.

During the German occupation of the Netherlands (1940–1945) many of the traditional Sinterklaas rhymes were rewritten to reflect current events.

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he Royal Air Force (RAF) was often celebrated. In 1941, for instance, the RAF dropped boxes of candy over the occupied Netherlands.

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One classical poem turned contemporary was the following:

original
Sinterklaas, kapoentje,
Gooi wat in mijn schoentje,
Gooi wat in mijn laarsje,
Dank U Sinterklaasje
which became the contemporary version
R.A.F. Kapoentje,
Gooi wat in mijn schoentje,
Bij de Moffen gooien,
Maar in Holland strooien!
translations
original
Sinterklaas, little capon,
Throw something in my little shoe,
Throw something in my little boot,
Thank you Sinterklaas
R.A.F. version
R.A.F. Little Capon,
throw something in my little shoe
throw [bombs] at the Krauts
but scatter [candy] in Holland!

This is a variation of one of the best-known traditional Sinterklaas rhymes, with “R.A.F.” replacing “Sinterklaas” in the first line (the two expressions have the same metrical characteristics in the first and second, and in the third and fourth lines). The Dutch word kapoentje (little rascal) is traditional to the rhyme, but in this case it also alludes to a capon. The second line is straight from the original rhyme, but in the third and fourth line the RAF is encouraged to drop bombs on the Moffen (slur for Germans, like “krauts” in English) and candy over the Netherlands. Many of the Sinterklaas poems of this time noted the lack of food and basic necessities, and the German occupiers having taken everything of value; others expressed admiration for the Dutch Resistance.

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Originally Sinterklaas was only accompanied with one (or sometimes two) Zwarte Pieten, but just after the liberation of the Netherlands, Canadian soldiers organized a Sinterklaas party with many Zwarte Pieten, and ever since this has been the custom, each Piet normally having his own dedicated task.

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The arrival of Sinreklaas has always been a big event in the Dutch Christmas time celebrations,ever since the first arrival in Venray in 1888 it has been a major event.

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However during the war years these arrival events were organized by National Socialist organizations like “Winterhulp” and “Nationale Jeugdstorm” from the NSB,basically the Dutch equivalent of the Hitler Youth.

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He didn’t always look like a jolly man during the war years this picture was taken in 1940. his 2 servants are in some sort of uniform so I reckon this arrival may not have been authorized by the NSB.

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It is sad to see that currently some people want to destroy what is basically a joyful event for children. In the darkest of days during WWII it would have given some hope and some sense of normality to the children,even when some of it was organized by the Dutch National Socialist Party

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I am passionate about my site and I know a you all like reading my blogs. I have been doing this at no cost and will continue to do so. All I ask is for a voluntary donation of $2 ,however if you are not in a position to do so I can fully understand, maybe next time then. Thanks

$2.00