The History of Santa Claus

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






We all remember being little kids on Christmas Eve and being too excited to go to sleep because we wanted to wait on Santa Claus and catch him in the act. Yet we always seemed to fall asleep and wake up to our cookies ate, the milk drank, and the presents under the tree. But how many people are curious about how the legend of Santa Claus actually began?

The history of Santa can be traced back to Northern Europe, where the weather is cold and melancholy. The coldest and darkest day of the year lands on December 21 or 22 where the sun only gives off a few week hours of light. During this dark time people would make up magical characters to lighten the mood by bringing gifts and celebrations. These magical characters consist of elves, gods, and goats. There are however two specific magical creatures that spark a particular interest in the modern day story.

The first is St. Nick in the Netherlands. He is thin and a little stern but still brings presents to the children in early December. He was dressed like a bishop in red and white with a staff and rides a horse names America in which Dutch children are encouraged to leave a carrot for. St. Nick is called Sinterklaas in Dutch.

The second character and is called Father Christmas from England. He is a jolly man dressed in green with a holly wreath on his head. In the traditional version he is less concerned about the children and gifts then he is with food, wine, and celebration. He is also known for being 1 of the 3 spirits put out on Christmas to terrorize Ebeneezer Scrooge.

Once the Europeans sailed the colonies St. Nick and Father Christmas along with the other magical characters began to mix. That is also why the U.S. version of Santa Claus has so many different names. In the old world all the different names for Santa were different people, but in the new world they have all become what we know today as Santa Claus.

As you can see there is a lot of interesting back history with the evolution of Santa Claus. Merry Christmas everyone. I hope you get a visit from Santa Claus this year.