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Section 8B ... Controversial Issues/ Christmas

 

003white  Section 8B... Controversial Issues       >        Index To Articles on Christmas       >      Santa Claus            

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Santa Claus.. Pretender To The Throne

Carol Brooks

A pretender is a claimant to a throne already occupied by somebody else.

(Based, in part, on an article entitled Santa Claus The Great Imposter
by Dr. Terry Watkins, Th.D.)

ON THIS PAGE

PART I.
Introduction
The Great Deceiver
Seeking Whom He May Devour

PART II. Tracing The Origins
St. Nicholas The Fourth Century Bishop
The Cult of St. Nicholas
Present Day Popularity
Physical Appearance
Date
The Gift Giver

A Curious Amalgam
Thor and Odin
The Tomte/Nisse

The Long Leap
From Amsterdam to New Amsterdam?
The Development of Santa Claus in America

Santa’s Companion.. The Mysterious Sidekick
The Model For Nast’s Santa..
The Miracle Plays
Ho! Ho! Ho!

Santa’s Names
An Anagram?
Old Nick
Kriss Kringle?

Santa’s Little Helpers

Part III. Santa Vs. The Bible
A Beard As White As Snow
A Suit of Red
A Carpenter
A House In The North
A Holly Wreath
A White Horse!
Ho, ho, ho
Santa And His Sleigh
Santa is Virtually Omniscient
(All-knowing).
Santa Rewards According to Works
Santa is Virtually Omnipotent
(All-powerful).
Santa is Virtually Omnipresent (Present Everywhere).
Santa Can Give You Anything. . Just Ask
The Fear of …Santa?
Bring The Little Children Unto Me
Santa’s ‘Throne’
Satan’s Ultimate Goal is Worship.
Believe In Santa

Part IV. Conclusion
But It Is Just Fantasy

 

Introduction:
One beautiful hymn contains the following line ”Joy to the world, the Lord is come! Let earth receive her King;”   Sadly the “earth” is doing anything but.  The meaning of Christmas has been lost in an endless round of festivities... shopping sprees, parties, decorations, trees, food, gifts and merrymaking. The King whose birth we celebrate at Christmas has slowly been ousted from centre stage as He doesn’t fit into today's politically correct views. For example... In 2006 Britain’s Royal Mail unveiled their 40th set of Christmas stamps… with six faith-free designs including snowmen, reindeer and Santa Claus. Christmas has become has become one gigantic commercial venture, with Santa Claus as the god-figure rather than Christ.

For the most part, the world will tolerate stars, angels, Christmas trees, or a baby sleeping in a manger. But there’s still "no room at the inn" for the King who invites us to walk His lowly path. Worse.. Jesus’ place has been usurped by a pleasant fat fellow’ boasting a red hat and team of reindeer. [usurp: to take a position of power or importance illegally or by force.]

Sound Ridiculous? It is! In fact it’s worse than ridiculous. Santa Claus has become the most beloved of Christmas symbols and traditions.
 

So how do we understand the Santa Claus phenomenon?

What do we REALLY know about Santa?

Is Santa just a harmless, friendly fellow? Or is there something or someone else hiding behind the façade?

Is he Satan in disguise, or wholly Christian modeled after a 4th century bishop

Sadly there is a lot more to the story than most people are aware of. Santa originated as an amalgam of St. Nicholas and various other pagan beliefs, which is bad enough. But, over the years, he morphed [a little added here and a little changed there] into the modern day, well known and well recognized figure, that bears far too many similarities to the one who appears as an “angel of light”, who once said he would exalt his throne above the stars of God and would be “like the most High”, and who is actively "seeking" those "whom he may devour"... The one the Bible calls ‘The Great Deceiver’.   [TOP OF PAGE]
 

The Great Deceiver

    And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. [Revelation 12:9].

    How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:  I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.[ Isaiah 14:12-14]

    "And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light"

    Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: [1 Peter 5:8].  [Also See Evidence For The Devil]    [TOP OF PAGE]


Seeking Whom He May Devour:

Children are the most vulnerable members of our society and it is no wonder that The Lord Jesus Christ warned several times against harming the "little ones".

    At the same time came the disciples unto Jesus, saying, Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?  And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them, And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me. But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea. [Matthew 18:1-6]

    And whosoever shall offend one of these little ones that believe in me, it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea. [Mark 9:42.]

Our Children and Youth are Under Attack From All Sides.

    “Everyone wants to get a piece of them. For instance, the New-Age Movement has an army just waiting to get hold of our children and youth. The gay-rights movement in this country wants nothing more than to make a generation of children think homosexuality is an acceptable alternative life-style. Advertisers on Saturday-morning cartoons want to influence our kids. Heavy-metal rock bands are trying to influence them. Those in favor of abortion rights want to get our kids thinking from their point-of-view. Drug dealers, beer companies, cigarette manufacturers, pornography publishers – the list goes on and on – they too are battling for the souls of our children and youth. [1]

[Harry Potter and, more recently, The Golden Compass are other direct frontal assault on the children, again with the willing compliance of many church leaders, parents and others that are spiritually blind]

    Almost everywhere we turn we see modern-day Nebuchadnezzars trying to turn the minds of our children from serving our God. Everywhere and from every direction, our children and youth come under attack, even as Daniel and his friends came under attack”. [1]

Dr. Terry Watkins bring up an interesting point in Santa Claus The Great Imposter, regarding a story in Mark...

    “Many parents have been "lullabied to sleep" with the deception that our children are innocently immune to the attack of Satan. There is a false security that believes our children will naturally "grow out of it" or "they’re just sowing their wild oats" or maybe "they’re just being kids". But the Bible paints a much different picture. In Mark chapter 9, God details a frightening occurrence. A man brings his "spirit possessed" son to the Lord Jesus Christ”.

      And one of the multitude answered and said, Master, I have brought unto thee my son, which hath a dumb spirit; And wheresoever he taketh him, he teareth him: and he foameth, and gnasheth with his teeth, and pineth away: and I spake to thy disciples that they should cast him out; and they could not. He answereth him, and saith, O faithless generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him unto me. And they brought him unto him: and when he saw him, straightway the spirit tare him; and he fell on the ground, and wallowed foaming.

       And he asked his father, How long is it ago since this came unto him? And he said, Of a child.  And ofttimes it hath cast him into the fire, and into the waters, to destroy him: but if thou canst do any thing, have compassion on us, and help us.

       Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.
       And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief. When Jesus saw that the people came running together, he rebuked the foul spirit, saying unto him, Thou dumb and deaf spirit, I charge thee, come out of him, and enter no more into him.

       And the spirit cried, and rent him sore, and came out of him: and he was as one dead; insomuch that many said, He is dead.  But Jesus took him by the hand, and lifted him up; and he arose. And when he was come into the house, his disciples asked him privately, Why could not we cast him out?  And he said unto them, This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting. [Mark 9:17-29]

      It is interesting the apostles could not cast out this kind (vs 29). Jesus said, "This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting." What kind of possession was it? What was different about this possession? I believe the answer is found in the only question the Lord Jesus asked. Jesus Christ asked the man "How long is it ago since this came unto him?" And the man answered, "Of a child". These hard to cast out kind are those that enter in a child. Is it because the possession reaches so deep and so strong that they’re almost impossible to remove?

Dr. Watkins goes on to say..

    “In Proverbs 22:6, the Bible explains the lifelong fruits of training a young child in the way he should go. That early training is so strong and so deep – as that child grows and matures – they will not depart from it.

      Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. [Proverbs 22:6]

    But. . . The flip side is: if that same child is trained by the ways of Satan and the world, chances are that child will not depart from it. [TOP OF PAGE]

A Point to Consider …

    “If you once believed in a man who knew what you were doing, who had amazing abilities, and who gave you nice things, and he turned out to be a fake, why should you believe in another man who knows what you are doing, has amazing abilities, gives you nice things--Jesus Christ? If you get burned once, why get burned the second time? Wouldn’t it be better to be honest with our children right from the start, and teach them the difference between truth and make-believe?” [2]

Apart from the fact that it is wrong to systematically lie to one's children, there is a danger that when they discover the truth or simply grow out of what is eventually perceived as a childish belief, they could subconsciously dismiss the true story of Jesus’ birth as just another “story”.

So what is the truth behind the ‘story’ that millions of children are fed every year at Christmas… A story that they spend many years believing. Is it a harmless myth or has it been carefully orchestrated and manipulated over the years with the ultimate aim of taking center stage at Christmas… and helping ensure that the Christ is once again sidelined.

The journey should begin with a look at the fourth century bishop who is often credited as being the inspiration for Santa.  [TOP OF PAGE]
 

St. Nicholas [Nikolaus]
The Fourth Century Bishop

Despite his popularity, the original Nicholas is a shadowy figure. Patron saint of sailors, pawnbrokers and SC-Nicholasmany other groups, there is little doubt that a Bishop of that name did exist in Myra (modern-day Antalya province, Turkey) in the 4th century. A church was built for him in the 6th century, which continues to be a tourist attraction in Myra, although the bishops remains were spirited away by 1087 by merchants from Bari in Italy, and are now held in the Basilica di San Nicola of that city... Pope Urban II is said to have been present at the consecration in 1089.

While we don't really know whether the original Nikolaus was particularly jolly or not, the enduring legends about his life suggest a great reputation for generosity. Many, many miracles [one more extravagant than the next] and good deeds have been attributed to St. Nick, including saving sailors from storms, restoring life to murdered boys, providing dowries for poor unmarried girls and destroying several pagan temples. [TOP OF PAGE]

The Cult of St. Nicholas
The cult of St. Nicholas spread far and wide. Holland built no fewer than 23 churches dedicated to him, many of which are still standing. Amsterdam even adopted St. Nicholas as its patron saint as did a few other towns.

    “Sailors, claiming St. Nicholas as patron, carried stories of his favor and protection far and wide. St. Nicholas chapels were built in many seaports. As his popularity spread during the Middle Ages, he became the patron saint of Apulia (Italy), Sicily, Greece, and Lorraine (France), and many cities in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Russia, Belgium, and the Netherlands. Following his baptism in Constantinople, Vladimir I of Russia brought St. Nicholas' stories and devotion to St. Nicholas to his homeland where Nicholas became the most beloved saint. Nicholas was so widely revered that more than 2,000 churches were named for him, including three hundred in Belgium, thirty-four in Rome, twenty-three in the Netherlands and more than four hundred in England”. [3] Emphasis Added

    He is venerated in the East as a miracle worker and in the West as patron of a great variety of persons -children, mariners, bankers, pawn-brokers, scholars, orphans, laborers, travelers, merchants, judges, paupers, marriageable maidens, students, children, sailors, victims of judicial mistakes, captives, perfumers, even thieves and murderers! He is known as the friend and protector of all in trouble or need. [3] Emphasis Added.

    ". . . the cult of St. Nicholas was, before the Reformation, the most intensive of any nonbiblical saint in Christendom. . . there were 2,137 ecclesiastical dedications [churches] to Nicholas in France, Germany, and the Low Countries alone before the year 1500." [4]

    "By the height of the Middle Ages, St. Nicholas was probably invoked in prayer more than any other figure except the Virgin Mary and Christ Himself" [5] [TOP OF PAGE]
     

And his popularity continues even today… For example [from Wikipedia]

    In Trieste in northeastern Italy St. Nicholas (San Nicolò) is celebrated with gifts given to children on the morning of the 6th of December and with a fair called Fiera di San Nicolò during the first weeks of December.

    In Germany many children put a boot, called Nikolaus-Stiefel, outside the front door on the night of December 5 to December 6. St. Nicholas fills the boot with gifts, and at the same time checks up on the children to see if they were good. If they were not, they will have charcoal in their boots instead.

    St. Nicholas (San Nicola) is the patron of the city of Bari, where he is buried. Its deeply felt celebration is called the Festa di San Nicola], held on the 7-8-9 of May. In particular on 8 May the relics of the saint are carried on a boat on the sea in front of the city with many boats following (Festa a mare). On December 6 there is a ritual called the Rito delle nubili.

    Interestingly St. Nicholas is the patron saint of a small town called Beit Jala near Bethlehem, since he is said to have spent four years there during his pilgrimage to the Holy Land. Every year on the 19th of December according to the Gregorian calendar [the 6th of December according to the Julian calendar] a great mass is held in the Orthodox Church of St. Nicholas, and is usually followed by parades, exhibitions etc.

It is difficult to reconcile the popularity of this man with the almost complete lack of verifiable detail about his life. However he is said to have opposed Arianism at the First Council of Nicaea in 325. [Apparently his name appears on some ancient lists]

    “the original minutes of this council were destroyed, people have tried to reconstruct the list of bishops who agreed to the orthodox formula to describe the Trinity, a brief text that became famous as the Nicene Creed. This list is known from eleven medieval copies. Only three of them mention Nicholas, but one of these is considered to be among the best copies”. [6]  [TOP OF PAGE]
     

Physical Appearance: In Catholic iconography [pictured above], Saint Nicholas is depicted as a bishop, wearing the insignia of this profession: a red bishop's cloak, red miter and a bishop's staff. Popularly depicted as a slim ascetic looking man dressed in religious apparel, the Bishop of Myra bears very little physical resemblance to the modern day Santa Claus, who has a long white beard, and is usually short and fat.

    If Nicholas, the ascetic bishop of fourth-century Asia Manor, could see Santa Claus, he would not know who he was. [7]

    So the legends of Saint Nicholas afford but a slight clue to the origin of Santa Klaus,–alike, indeed, in name but so unlike in all other respects. [8] [TOP OF PAGE]

Date: There is absolutely nothing to connect the original St. Nicholas to the celebration of Christmas on December 25th. On the contrary, the celebration of St. Nicholas is separate from the Christmas holidays. Most Europeans [and some Americans] still celebrate St. Nicholas day on December 6th, the date in AD 343 on which he was believed to have died. Many people in Milwaukee, Cincinnati, and St. Louis and other cities in the US with strong Germanic traditions have observed this day for generations. Often St. Nicholas Day, not Christmas, is the main holiday for gift giving, However the gifts he left beside the hearth were usually small: fruit, nuts, candy, small figurines etc. [See Present Day Popularity above]  [TOP OF PAGE]

The Gift Giver:

    “The Feast of St. Nicholas on Dec. 6 has been observed with great enthusiasm throughout Medieval Europe over the centuries. This enthusiasm was due to the many legends that had grown up around Nicholas: that he had distributed gifts to the poor at night through their windows, had fasted while a baby, had helped dowerless maidens, saved a city from famine, had aided a ship in distress, etc. [9] 

St. Nicholas traditions vary slightly from country to country. In sixteenth-century Holland, children placed wooden shoes by the hearth the night of St. Nicholas's arrival. The shoes were filled with straw, a meal for the saint's gift-laden donkey. In return, Nicholas would insert a small treat into each clog. [The shoe was replaced with the stocking, hung by the chimney In America.

    Because of the gift-giving legends associated with Nicholas, it was held (especially in Belgium and Holland) that on the Eve the Feast of Nicholas, the bishop himself would come from heaven and visit children in their homes, giving gifts to those who had been good. Nicholas, decked out in full ecclesiastical garb (bishop's vestments, with miter and crozier), would arrive on a flying gray horse (or white donkey, depending on the custom). In some variations of the legend, he was accompanied by Black Peter, an elf whose job was to punish children who had been bad”. [10]

In Belgium

    On St. Nicholas' Eve, December 5th, or the weekend before, children put their shoes or small baskets at the hearth or beside the door with carrots, turnips, and a sugar lump for the saint's horse and a glass of wine for the saint. There may also be a picture they've drawn (or a list) showing what they would like. They believe St. Nicholas rides on horseback over the rooftops, dropping his gifts down the chimneys. In the morning shoes have been filled with chocolates, spiced cookies shaped like the saint and Piet, oranges, marzipan, and toys. In the spirit of St. Nicholas, treats are meant to be shared, not hoarded. Bad children, of which there are none, would find twigs. …” [11]

And in Germany

    In Roman Catholic areas of southern Germany, such as Bavaria, Sankt Nikolaus still comes as a with flowing beard and a bishop's and staff. Houses are thoroughly cleaned and children clean and polish their shoes or boots in preparation for the visit. On the evening before , children put letters to the good saint along with carrots or other food for his white horse or donkey on a plate or in their shoes. These are left outside, under the bed, beside a radiator, or on a windowsill in hopes of finding goodies from St. Nicholas the next morning. During the night Sankt Nikolaus goes from house to house carrying a book in which all the children's deeds are written. If they have been good, he fills their plate, shoe or boot with delicious fruits, nuts and candies. If not, they may find potatoes, coal, or twigs. [11]

While in Bulgaria the feast does not seem to be particularly centered around children and gift giving

    Bulgarians celebrate St. Nicholas as the protector of sailors and fishermen. Stories are told of St. Nikolay, the commander of the sea, calming wind and storms and saving ships in danger… A fish dish, ribnik, carp wrapped in dough or baked with rice, is served as carp is regarded as Nicholas' servant. Ribnik is baked in the oven along with two special loaves of bread. The food is blessed at church or at home before being served. [12] [TOP OF PAGE]
     

A Curious Amalgam
While undoubtedly Santa Claus was based in part on St Nicholas and the gift giving legends associated with him, the modern day Santa Claus bears remarkable similarities to other sources.

    In Germany, St. Nicholas is also known as Klaasbuur, Sunnercla, Burklaas, Bullerklaas, and Rauklas, and in eastern Germany, he is also known as Shaggy Goat, Ash Man and Rider and is more reflective of earlier pagan influences (Norse) that were blended in with the figure of St. Nicholas, when Christianity came to Germany. [13]

The truth is that St. Nicholas is a blend of many different cultures, customs, legends and mythological creatures. Consider the similarities to these early legends.


Thor and Odin

    9th Century
    In 9th century England the Saxons honoured King Winter or King Frost. He would be represented by somebody dressed in a fur hat or crown and would visit their firesides. The Saxons believed that by welcoming Winter as a personage or deity the season would be less harsh to them.

    9th & 10th Century
    With the arrival of the Vikings in England during the 9th and 10th centuries Odin, their chief god, influenced the Winter gift practices. Odin had twelve characters and the one for December was known as Yalka or Jule and his month was called Jultid from which Yuletide derives. The Vikings believed that Odin visited Earth during Jultid on Sleipnir, his eight-legged horse. He would be disguised in a long blue hooded cloak and carrying a staff and a satchel of bread. His companion was either a Raven or Crow. He was said to join groups around their fire and listen to their conversations to see if they were content. He would sometimes leave the bread as a gift at poor homesteads. [14]

Most Santa researchers agree that some traits of Santa [including the reindeer?] was borrowed from Norse [Scandinavian] mythology.

    Prior to the Germanic peoples' Christianization, Germanic folklore contained stories about the god Odin (Wodan), who would each year, at Yule, have a great hunting party accompanied by his fellow gods and the fallen warriors residing in his realm. Children would place their boots, filled with carrots, straw or sugar, near the chimney for Odin's flying horse, Sleipnir, to eat. Odin would then reward those children for their kindness by replacing Sleipnir's food with gifts or candy [Siefker, chap. 9, esp. 171-173]. This practice survived in Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands after the adoption of Christianity and became associated with Saint Nicholas. [15]

    Most of the stories originate with in the European culture, primarily that of the Nordic traditions of Northern Europe. The Norse god Odin rode on a white eight legged horse and delivered either presents or punishments. The eight legged horse may be the origins of the eight reindeer that we know of today along with the naughty or nice list is constantly checked. [16]

[Santa Originally had eight reindeer. Rudolph, the ninth reindeer and son of Donner, was the result of a verse written by Robert L. May for Montgomery Ward in 1939 and published as a book to be given to children in the store at Christmas.]

     “It is held by some scholars that the legends of Nicholas as gift-giver drew in part from pagan, pre-Christian sources. For example, the Teutonic god of the air, Odin, would ride through the air on a gray horse (named Sleipnir) each Autumn - so did Nicholas; Odin had a long white beard - so did Nicholas; a sheaf of grain was left in the field for Odin's horse - children left a wisp of straw in their shoes for Nicholas. [McKnight, 24-25, 138-139] Others claim that attributes of the Germanic god Thor, the god of thunder, were transferred to Nicholas. Thor was supposedly elderly and heavy with a long white beard; he road through the air in a chariot drawn by two white goats (called Cracker and Gnasher); he dressed in red; his palace was in the "northland;" he was friendly and cheerful; he would come down the chimney into his element, the fire. [17]

    No definitive correlation has ever been found between the "visit of St. Nicholas" and pagan gods such as Odin and Thor. However the similarity is striking and some relationship seems likely”. [18] Emphasis Added]

Encyclopedia Britannica describes the role of Nordic mythology in the life of Santa:

    Sinterklaas was adopted by the country's English-speaking majority under the name Santa Claus, and his legend of a kindly old man was united with old Nordic folktales of a magician who punished naughty children and rewarded good children with presents. [19]

    Some Santa researchers associate Santa with the Norse "god" of Odin or Woden. Crichton describes Odin as riding through the sky on an eight-legged, white horse name Sleipnir. (Santa originally had eight reindeers, Rudolph was nine). Odin lived in Valhalla (the North) and had a long white beard. Odin would fly through the sky during the winter solstice (December 21-25) rewarding the good children and punishing the naughty. [20]

    Mythologist Helene Adeline Guerber presents a very convincing case tracing Santa to the Norse god Thor in Myths of Northern Lands: [Thor being a son of Odin with Thursday (Thor’s Day) being named after him. [21].

    Thor was the god of the peasants and the common people. He was represented as an elderly man, jovial and friendly, of heavy build, with a long white beard. His element was the fire, his color red. The rumble and roar of thunder were said to be caused by the rolling of his chariot, for he alone among the gods never rode on horseback but drove in a chariot drawn by two white goats (called Cracker and Gnasher). He was fighting the giants of ice and snow, and thus became the Yule-god. He was said to live in the "Northland" where he had his palace among icebergs. By our pagan forefathers he was considered as the cheerful and friendly god, never harming the humans but rather helping and protecting them. The fireplace in every home was especially sacred to him, and he was said to come down through the chimney into his element, the fire. [22]

In the Handbook of Christian Feasts and Customs, author Francis Weiser traces the origin of Santa to Thor:

    "Behind the name Santa Claus actually stands the figure of the pagan Germanic god Thor." [23]

After listing some the common attributes of Thor and Santa, Weiser concludes:

    Here, [Thor] then, is the true origin of our "Santa Claus." . . . With the Christian saint whose name he still bears, however, this Santa Claus has really nothing to do. [24]

In the words of Dr. Terry Watkins in Santa Claus The Great Imposter … “The unusual and common characteristics of Santa and Thor are too close to ignore.

  • An elderly man, jovial and friendly and of heavy build.
  • With a long white beard.
  • His element was the fire and his color red.
  • Drove a chariot drawn by two white goats, named called Cracker and Gnasher.
  • He was the Yule-god. (Yule is Christmas time).
  • He lived in the Northland (North Pole).
  • He was considered the cheerful and friendly god.
  • He was benevolent to humans.
  • The fireplace was especially sacred to him.
  • He came down through the chimney into his element, the fire”. [TOP OF PAGE]
     

The Tomte/Nisse
The tomte/nisse is a mythical creature of Scandinavian folklore originating from Norse paganism and in ancient times was believed to be the "soul" of the first inhabitor of the farm. The tomte/nisse was usually described as a short man (under four feet tall) wearing a red cap with a tassel. Nisse were believed to take care of a farmer’s home and children and protect them from misfortune, in particular at night, when the house folk were asleep. Despite his smallness, the tomte/nisse possessed an immense strength. Even though he was protective and caring he was easy to offend, and his retributions ranged from a stout box on the ears to the killing of livestock or ruining of the farm’s fortune. A particular gift was a bowl of porridge on Christmas night. If he wasn’t given his payment, he would leave the farm or house, or engage in mischief such as tying the cows’ tails together in the barn, turning objects upside-down, and breaking things. The tomte was not always a popular figure: Like most creatures of folklore he would be seen as heathen and become connected to the Devil and having a tomte on the farm meant you put the fate of your soul at risk.

In the English editions of the fairy tales of H. C. Andersen the word nisse has been inaccurately translated as "goblin". A more accurate translation is "brownie"... the Scottish counterpart of the Scandinavian tomte. Since there is a Tomtar & Troll shop in Stockholm Sweden, I assume Tomtar is closely related to a Troll.

    In the 1840s the farm's "nisse" became the bearer of Christmas presents in Denmark, and was then called "julenisse". In 1881, the Swedish magazine Ny Illustrerad Tidning published Viktor Rydberg's poem Tomten, where the tomte is alone awake in the cold Christmas night, pondering the mysteries of life and death. This poem featured the first painting by Jenny Nyström of this traditional Swedish mythical character which she turned into the white-bearded, red-capped friendly figure associated with Christmas ever since. Shortly afterwards, and obviously influenced by the emerging Father Christmas traditions as well as the new Danish tradition, a variant of the tomte/nisse, called the "jultomte" in Sweden and "julenisse" in Norway, started bringing the Christmas presents in Sweden and Norway, instead of the traditional julbock Yule Goat. [25]SC-Tomte

Jenny Nyström  is mainly known as the person who created the Swedes’ image of the “jultomte” on numerous Christmas cards and magazine covers [illustration on the right], thus linking the Swedish version of Santa Claus to the gnomes of Scandinavian folklore. [26]

The Jultomten brings gifts in a sleigh driven by the goats of Thor..

    Swedish children wait eagerly for Jultomten, a gnome whose sleigh is drawn by the Julbocker, the goats of the thunder god Thor. With his red suit and cap, and a bulging sack on his back, he looks much like the American Santa Claus. [27]

    In some areas of Sweden, Jultmoten the Gift-Bringer is a gnome whose sleigh is drawn by the Julbocker, goats which are the property of Thor, God of Thunder. Julmoten dresses in red and carries a bulging sack upon his back. [28] Emphasis Added].
    [TOP OF PAGE]


The Long Leap
It has been oft claimed that Santa Claus was introduced to America by the Dutch, who settled in what was known as New Amsterdam.. now New York. Apparently this story is without much, if any merit. The St, Nicholas center tells us that….[All Emphasis Added]

    Although it is nearly universally reported that the Dutch did bring St. Nicholas to New Amsterdam [Now New York], scholars find limited evidence of such traditions in Dutch New Netherland. Colonial Germans in Pennsylvania held the feast of St. Nicholas, and several accounts do have St. Nicholas visiting New York Dutch on New Years' Eve. [29]

    This was not a saintly bishop, rather an elfin Dutch burgher with a clay pipe. These delightful flights of imagination are the origin of the New Amsterdam St. Nicholas legends: that the first Dutch emigrant ship had a figurehead of St. Nicholas; that St. Nicholas Day was observed in the colony; that the first church was dedicated to him; and that St. Nicholas comes down chimneys to bring gifts. Irving's work was regarded as the "first notable work of imagination in the New World." [29]

Other Sources [All Emphasis Added ]

    The claim that Dutch settlers, in 1626 introduced Sinter Claes to New Amsterdam (to be New York) is an invention of Washington Irving (History of New York, started in 1809). Charles W. Jones states (1954, Knickerbocker Santa Claus, New York Historical Society Quarterly, Vol. 38, No. 4, pp. 357-383, see pp. 367-71) that no documentary evidence has ever been found of a Dutch Santa Claus cult in New Amsterdam or in the [pre-1773, BKS, see below] British colonial period in New York. The settlers of New Amsterdam were Protestants, not Catholics, with little St. Nicholas tradition. [30]

    Nearly everyone repeats this story [the Dutch-Santa]. . . But when we look at the evidence—that is, the newspapers, magazines, diaries, books, broadsides, music, sculpture, and merchandise of past times, the picture is not substantiated. [31]

    There is no evidence that it [Santa Claus] existed in New Amsterdam, or for a century after occupation. . . ([31]

    I have not found evidence of St. Nicholas in any form—in juveniles or periodicals or diaries—in the period of Dutch rule, or straight through the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries to the year 1773. [31]

    Years of research confirmed that initial doubt: Santa Claus is an Americanization, all right, but not of a Catholic Saint. . . Despite a century of repetition, this story is simply untrue. . . [32]

    The dilemma was solved by transferring the visit of the mysterious man whom the Dutch called Santa Claus from December 5 to Christmas, and by introducing a radical change in the figure itself. It was not merely a "disguise," but the ancient saint was completely replaced by an entirely different character. . .With the Christian saint whose name he still bears, however this Santa Claus has really nothing to do. [33]

The truth is that the modern day Santa Claus bears little resemblance to the Catholic Saint and has almost entirely replaced him. [TOP OF PAGE]
 

The Development of Santa Claus in America
The following is a short summation of the development of Santa Claus in America..

In 1804, the New York Historical Society was founded with Nicholas as its patron saint, its members reviving the Dutch tradition of St. Nicholas as a gift-bringer. In 1809, Washington Irving published his satirical A History of New York, by one "Diedrich Knickerbocker," a work that poked fun at New York's Dutch past (St. Nicholas included). When Irving became a member of the Society the following year, the annual St. Nicholas Day dinner festivities included a woodcut of the traditional Nicholas figure (tall, with long robes) accompanied by a Dutch rhyme about "Sancte Claus" (in Dutch, "Sinterklaas"). Irving revised his History of New York in 1812, adding details about Nicholas' "riding over the tops of the trees, in that selfsame waggon wherein he brings his yearly presents to children." [14]

    Two quotes from Washington Irving’s A History of New York

      And the sage Oloffe dreamed a dream,–and lo, the good St. Nicholas came riding over the tops of the trees, in that self-same wagon wherein he brings his yearly presents to the children. . . And when St. Nicholas had smoked his pipe, he twisted it in his hatband, and laying his finger beside his nose, gave the astonished Van Kortlandt a very significant look; then, mounting his wagon, he returned over the treetops and disappeared. [34]

      At this early period was instituted that pious ceremony, still religiously observed in all our ancient families of the right breed, of hanging up a stocking in the chimney on St. Nicholas Eve; which stocking is always found in the morning miraculously filled; for the good St. Nicholas has ever been a great giver of gifts, particularly to children. [35]

 “In 1821, a New York printer named William Gilley issued a poem about a "Santeclaus" who dressed all in fur and drove a sleigh pulled by one reindeer. Gilley's "Sante," however, was very short.

On Christmas Eve of 1822, another New Yorker, Clement Clarke Moore, wrote down and read to his children a series of verses; his poem was published a year later as "An Account of a Visit from St. Nicholas" (more commonly known today by its opening line, "'Twas the night before Christmas . . ."). Moore gave St. Nick eight reindeer (and named them all), and he devised the now-familiar entrance by chimney. Moore's Nicholas was still a small figure, however -- the poem describes a "miniature sleigh" with a "little old driver."

In 1863, a caricaturist for Harper's Weekly named Thomas Nast began developing his own image of Santa.SC-Nast Nast gave his figure a "flowing set of whiskers" and dressed him "all in fur, from his head to his foot." Nast's 1866 montage entitled "Santa Claus and His Works" established Santa as a maker of toys; an 1869 book of the same name collected new Nast drawings with a poem by George P. Webster that identified the North Pole as Santa's home. Although Nast never settled on one size for his Santa figures (they ranged from elf-like to man-sized), his 1881 "Merry Old Santa Claus" drawing is quite close to the modern-day image”. “ [14]

Harper’s Weekly online provides a little more insight.

    While setting the national standard, Nast’s own depiction of Santa Claus changed over the years.  He began his almost-annual contribution of Christmas illustrations when he joined the staff of Harper’s Weekly in 1862 during the Civil War. [Nast contributed 33 Christmas drawings to Harper’s Weekly from 1863 through 1886, and Santa is seen or referenced in all but one. His first Santa (in the postdated January 3, 1863 issue) is a small elf distributing Christmas presents to Union soldiers in camp. [36]

    From 1866-1871, Nast continued to elaborate upon the image of Santa Claus portrayed in “Santa and His Works.”  As in the featured cartoon, he also emphasized during this period Santa’s disciplinary role in judging whether the behavior of children during the past year warranted Christmas rewards or punishment. In an 1870 cartoon, Santa surprises two naughty children by jumping out as a jack-in-the-box clutching a switch for spanking. In 1871, Santa sits at his desk reading letter from parents chronicling their children’s good and bad acts, with the “letters from naughty children’s parents” far outnumbering the “letters from good children’s parents.” [36]. [TOP OF PAGE]
     

Incidentally the tradition of decorating a Christmas Tree originated in Germany, and arrived on American shores in the ‘40’s. Time Magazine reported..

    “even before the arrival of Christianity, Germans decorated evergreen trees to brighten the dark, gloomy days of the winter solstice. The first "Christmas trees" appeared in Strasbourg in the 17th century and spread to Pennsylvania in the 1820s with the arrival of German immigrants. When Queen Victoria married Germany's Prince Albert in 1840, he brought the tradition to England. Eight years later, the first American newspaper ran a picture of the royal Christmas tree and Americans outside of Pennsylvania quickly followed.” [36b] [TOP OF PAGE]


Santa’s Companion
This section is almost entirely excerpted from Santa Claus The Great Imposter by Dr. Terry Watkins.)

There is a little-known piece in the life of Santa that time and tradition has silently erased. Few people are aware that for most of his life, St. Nicholas (Sinter Klaas, Christkind, et. al.) had an unusual helper or companion. This mysterious sidekick had many names or aliases. He was known as Knecht Rupprecht; SC-KrampusPelznickle; Ru-Klas; Swarthy; Dark One; Dark Helper; Black Peter; Hans Trapp; Krampus; Grampus; Zwarte Piets; Furry Nicholas; Rough Nicholas; Schimmelreiter; Klapperbock; Julebuk; et. al.


Though his name changed, he was always there.
Some other well known titles given to St. Nick’s bizarre companion is a demon, evil one, the devil and Satan. One of his dark duties was to punish children and "gleefully drag them to hell."

The following references are provided to demonstrate the "devil" who accompanies St. Nicholas is a well documented fact. In every forerunner of Santa this dark and diabolic character appears.

    It is the Christkind who brings the presents, accompanied by one of its many devilish companions, Knecht Ruprecht, Pelznickle, Ru-Klas. . . [37]

    In many areas of Germany, Hans Trapp is the demon who accompanies Christkind on its gift-giving round. . . [38]

    Another Christmas demon from lower Austria, Krampus or Grampus, accompanies St. Nicholas on December 6. [39]

    Like Santa, Sinterklaas and the Dark Helper were also supposed to have the peculiar habit of entering homes through the chimney. . . [40]

    In Sarajevo in Bosnia, Saint Nickolas appears with gifts for the children in spite of the war and shelling. He is assisted by a small black devil who scares the children. [41]

    Ruprecht here plays the part of bogeyman, a black, hairy, horned, cannibalistic, stick-carrying nightmare. His role and character are of unmitigated evil, the ultimate horror that could befall children who had been remiss in learning their prayers and doing their lessons. He was hell on earth. [42]

    In Holland, Sinterklaas (Santa Claus) wore a red robe while riding a white horse and carried a bag ofSC-Krampus-2 gifts to fill the children's stockings. A sinister assistant called Black Pete proceeded Sinterklaas in the Holland tradition to seek out the naughty boys and girls who would not receive gifts. [43]

    The Christian figure of Saint Nicholas replaced or incorporated various pagan gift-giving figures such as the Roman Befana and the Germanic Berchta and Knecht Ruprecht. . . He was depicted wearing a bishop's robes and was said to be accompanied at times by Black Peter, an elf whose job was to whip the naughty children. [44]

Christmas historian Miles Clement relates that no "satisfactory account has yet been given" to the origins of these demons and devils that appear with St. Nicholas.

    It can hardly be said that any satisfactory account has yet been given of the origins of this personage, or of his relation to St. Nicholas, Pelzmarte, and monstrous creatures like the Klapperbock. [45]

Maybe a satisfactory account has been given. Let us keep reading.

Previously, we established the peculiar fact that today’s Santa Claus and St. Nicholas are not the same. They never have been. Santa Claus is dressed in a long shaggy beard, furs, short, burly and obese. The legends of St. Nicholas portrayed a thin, tall, neatly dressed man in religious apparel. You could not possibly find two different characters.

    If Nicholas, the ascetic bishop of fourth-century Asia Manor, could see Santa Claus, he would not know who he was. [46]

    So the legends of Saint Nicholas afford but a slight clue to the origin of Santa Klaus,–alike, indeed, in name but so unlike in all other respects. [47] [TOP OF PAGE]


The Model For Nast’s Santa..
The startling fact is, Santa Claus is not the Bishop St. Nicholas – but his Dark Helper!

    In certain German children’s games, the Saint Nicholas figure itself is the Dark Helper, a devil who wants to punish children, but is stopped from doing so by Christ. [48]

    Black Pete, the ‘grandfather’ of our modern Santa Claus. Known in Holland as Zwarte Piet, this eighteenth-century German version, is—like his ancient shamanic ancestor—still horned, fur-clad, scary, and less than kind to children. Although portrayed as the slave helper of Saint Nicholas, the two are, in many villages, blended into one character. This figure often has the name Nikolass or Klaus, but has the swarthy appearance of the Dark Helper. [49]

Artist Thomas Nast is rightfully credited for conceiving the image of our modern day Santa, but Nast’s model for Santa was not the Bishop St. Nicholas but his dark companion, the evil Pelznickle.

[IPS Note: Nast was an immigrant from Bavaria and was familiar with Pelznickle]

    The Christmas demon Knecht Rupprecht first appeared in a play in 1668 and was condemned by the Roman Catholic as being a devil in 1680. . . To the Pennsylvania Dutch, he is known as Belsnickel. Other names for the same character are Pelznickle, "Furry Nicholas," and Ru-Klas, "Rough Nicholas." From these names, it is easy to see that he is looked upon as not merely a companion to St. Nicholas, but almost another version of him. [50]

In Thomas Nast: His Period and His Pictures, biographer Albert Bigelow Paine, documents that Nast’s Santa was Pelznickle.

    But on Christmas Eve, to Protestant and Catholic alike, came the German Santa Claus, Pelze-Nicol, leading a child dressed as the Christkind, and distributing toys and cakes, or switches, according as the parents made report. It was this Pelze-Nicol – a fat, fur-clad, bearded old fellow, at whose hands he doubtless received many benefits – that the boy in later years was to present to us as his conception of the true Santa Claus – a pictorial type which shall lone endure. [51]

Santa historian and author, Tony van Renterghem also documents Nast’s Santa Claus was not Saint Nicholas, but the evil Black Pete–the devil.

    Thomas Nast was assigned to draw this Santa Claus, but having no idea what he looked like, drew him as the fur-clad, small, troll-like figure he had known in Bavaria when he was a child. This figure was quite unlike the tall Dutch Sinterklaas, who was traditionally depicted as a Catholic bishop. Who he drew was Saint Nicholas’ dark helper, Swarthy, or Black Pete (a slang name for the devil in medieval Dutch). . . [52]

Santa researcher, Phyllis Siefker, echoes Renterghem’s conclusion:

    It seems obvious, therefore, that Santa Claus can be neither the alter ego of Saint Nicholas nor the brainchild of Washington Irving. . . If we peek behind the imposing Saint Nicholas, we see, glowering in the shadows, the saint’s reprobate companion, Black Pete. He, like Santa, has a coat of hair, a disheveled beard, a bag, and ashes on his face. . . In fact, it is this creature, rather than Irving’s creation or an Asian saint, who fathered Santa Claus. [53]

By the way, St. Nicholas did not come down the chimney. It was his fur-clad, dark companion that came down the chimney. One of the reasons his sidekick was called the "Dark One" or "Black Peter" was because he was normally covered in soot and ashes from his chimney travels. The "dark companion" also carried the bag, distributed the goodies and punished the bad boys and girls.

    Children [in Holland] are told that Black Peter enters the house through the chimney, which also explained his black face and hands, and would leave a bundle of sticks or a small bag with salt in the shoe instead of candy when the child had been bad. [54]

SC-Krampus-4It is significant that Black Peter, Pelze-Nicol, Knecht Rupprecht and all of St. Nicholas companions are openly identified as the devil.

    To the medieval Dutch, Black Peter was another name for the devil. Somewhere along the way, he was subdued by St. Nicholas and forced to be his servant. [55]

    In Denmark, Sweden, and Norway creatures resembling both the Schimmelreiter and the Klapperbock are or were to be met with at Christmas. . . People seem to have had a bad conscience about these things, for there are stories connecting them with the Devil. A girl, for instance, who danced at midnight with a straw Julebuk, found that her partner was no puppet but the Evil One himself. 56]

    Thus, in parts of Europe, the Church turned Herne into Saint Nicholas’ captive, chained Dark Helper, none other than Satan, the Dark One, symbolic of all evil. [57]

One of the bizarre jobs of St. Nick’s devilish helper was to "gleefully drag sinners" to hell! SC-Krampus-3

    On the eve of December 6, the myth told that this bearded, white-haired old ‘saint,’ clad in a wide mantel, rode through the skies on a white horse, together with his slave, the swarthy Dark Helper. This reluctant helper had to disperse gifts to good people, but much preferred to threaten them with his broom-like scourge, and, at a sign of his master, would gleefully drag sinners away to a place of eternal suffering. [58]

The shocking truth is Santa Claus originated from a character identified as the devil or Satan. [TOP OF PAGE]
 

The Miracle Plays
This section is almost entirely excerpted from Santa Claus The Great Imposter by Dr. Terry Watkins.)

Something else that fashioned our modern day Santa was the popular medieval Christmas plays of the tenth through the sixteenth century. These miracle, moral, mystery and passion dramas acted out scenes from the scriptures and the liturgy of the Roman Catholic Church. Combining humor and religion, they flourished during the fifteenth century. It is significant that St. Nicholas was a dominant theme among these plays. Much of the myth and outlandish miracles of St. Nicholas originated from these dramas. And much of the bizarre characteristics of Santa were planted in these Christmas plays.

In the classic, Teutonic Mythology, author Jacob Grimm provides us with some revealing detail into St. Nicholas’ transformation into Santa. Notice in the following excerpt from Teutonic Mythology where Nicholas converts himself into the Knecht Ruprecht [the devil], a "man of Clobes" or a "man of Claus." Grimm states, the characters of Nicholas and Knecht Ruprecht "get mixed, and Clobes [Claus] himself is the "man."

    The Christmas plays sometimes present the Saviour with His usual attendant Peter or else with Niclas [St. Nicholas]. At other times however Mary with Gabriel, or with her aged Joseph, who, disguised as a peasant, acts the part of Knecht Ruprecht. Nicholas again has converted himself into a "man Clobes" or Rupert; as a rule there is still a Niclas, a saintly bishop and benevolent being distinct from the "man" who scares children; the characters get mixed, and Clobes himself acts the "man." [59]

From Grimm’s account, in the early 1100’s, the transformation of St. Nicholas into Santa Claus from the devil Knecht Ruprecht was in full throttle.  [TOP OF PAGE]
 

Ho! Ho! Ho!
There is not enough space in this book to adequately document the influence and inspiration of the medieval plays into the making of Santa, but let us examine Santa’s trademark "Ho! Ho! Ho!". Most people have no idea where this came from, and more importantly whom it came from. In The Drama Before Shakespeare - A Sketch, author Frank Ireson, describes the popular Miracle Play. Notice the description of the devil as "shaggy, hairy," etc. (as Santa), and notice the devil’s trademark "exclamation on entering was ho, ho, ho!":

    Besides allegorical personages, there were two standing characters very prominent in Moral Plays—the Devil and Vice. The Devil was, no doubt, introduced from the Miracle Plays, where he had figured so amusingly; he was made as hideous as possible by his mask and dress, the latter being generally of a shaggy and hairy character, and he was duly provided with a tail: his ordinary exclamation on entering was, "Ho, ho, ho! what a felowe [sic] am I." [60]

Siefker also collaborates the devil’s trademark "ho, ho, ho."

    In these plays, the devil’s common entry line, known as the "devil’s bluster," was "Ho! Ho! Hoh!"  [61]

The devil’s trademark "ho, ho, ho" was carried over from the early medieval Miracle Plays to the popular old English play "Bomelio," as the following lines from the play verify:

    What, and a' come? I conjure thee, foul spirit, down to hell! Ho, ho, ho! the devil, the devil! A-comes, a-comes, a-comes upon me,. . . [62]
     

[IPS Note: In the above instance it is probable that the  Ho, ho, ho is being used much as it is in the Bible in Zechariah 2:6,7. The Hebrew word translated Ho is [hôy ] and means  oh! ah, alas, O, woe. IN other words the person is saying ‘Alas! The devil comes].

Author Tony Renterghem, concludes his extensive research into the origin of Santa with the following statement: [Emphasis Added]

    I can only conclude that the original ancestor of our modern Santa Claus is none other than the mythological Dark Helper-a faint memory of Herne/Pan, the ancient shamanic nature spirit of the Olde Religion. [63]

    Note: Herne or Pan is the horned god. It is common knowledge that Pan and Herne are popular names for Satan. The Satanic Bible lists Pan as one of the Infernal Names of Satan. [64]

After researching scores of books and material on the origin of Santa Claus, by far, the best book on this subject is Santa Claus, Last of the Wild Men: The Origins and Evolution of Saint Nicholas, authored by the late University of Kansas associate, Phyllis Siefker. This is no child’s book, but a scholarly exploration into the origin of Santa Claus. It is published by the prestigious McFarland Publishers, a leading publisher of reference and academic books. This book carries no Christian bias, but is simply a secular, non Christian scholastic study. With that in mind, the following analysis by Siefkler is even more alarming [Emphasis Added]

    The fact is that Santa and Satan are alter egos, brothers; they have the same origin. . . On the surface, the two figures are polar opposites, but underneath they share the same parent, and both retain many of the old symbols associated with their "father" . . . From these two paths, he arrived at both the warmth of our fireplace and in the flames of hell. [65] [TOP OF PAGE]


Santa.. The Name
An Anagram?

Much has been said about ‘Santa’ being an anagram for ‘Satan’. While I am not sure how much importance to attach to this, the fact that Sanat Kumara is obviously an anagram for Satan gives me pause for thought. According to some of the teachings derived from modern Theosophy, i.e. the teachings of Alice A. Bailey, C. W. Leadbeater, Guy Ballard, Elizabeth Clare Prophet and Geraldine Innocente, Sanat Kumara is the Lord or Regent of Earth and of humanity. It is believed by some that he is the founder of the Great White Brotherhood, and that he lives in a city on the etheric plane called Shamballa located above the Gobi Desert in Mongolia.

[Read More About Alice Bailey and The Reappearance of ‘The Christ’]

[Also  Shamballa]

Jolly Old St. Nick
Nick or Old Nick is a well-known appellation of the Devil. The name appears to have been derived from the Dutch Nikken, the devil, which again comes from the Anglo-Saxon nac-an, to slay--for as Wachter says the devil was "a murderer from the beginning."

    Old Nick: A well-known British name of the Devil. It seems probable that this name is derived from the Dutch Nikken, the devil... [66]

    Nick, the devil. [67]

    Devil: Besides the name Satan, he is also called Beelzebub, Lucifer . . . and in popular or rustic speech by many familiar terms as Old Nick . . . [68]

Kriss Kringle?
One of the most perturbing aspects of this whole story is the seemingly innocent, friendly, jingle-jangle SC-Krisname of Kriss Kringle which is German for "little Christ Child".

    Kriss Kringle A US name for Santa Claus derived from the German Christkindl (little Christ child). [69]

Whatever the truth behind the legend, it is one further step in the whole sorry saga of ‘Santa’.

    According to legend, Martin Luther was distressed over the growing popularity of Saint Nicholas. Saint Nicholas (who is the patron saint of sailors, children and unmarried maidens) has long been associated with giving gifts at Christmas time to children and is still popular in many parts of Europe, especially The Netherlands. However, Martin Luther thought the belief in Saint Nicholas took away from the true meaning of Christmas, which was to celebrate the birth of Jesus. Therefore, he is credited with introducing the Christkindl to Germany and parts of Switzerland. The Christkindl, usually portrayed by a young girl with a golden crown and wings, is the main attraction at Christmas parties, as she passes out presents to the other children. During the 18th Century, German and Swiss immigrants, settling in Pennsylvania, brought the tradition of the Christkindl with them. Over time, as English settlers began to populate the area, the word Christkindl was simplified to Kriss Kringle, and became another name for Santa Clause. [70]  [TOP OF PAGE]


Santa’s Little Helpers?
Santa has some “cute” little helpers called elves, however Webster’s Dictionary has an interesting definition for the SC_Helpersfriendly elf:

    ELF
    1. A wandering spirit; a fairy; a hobgoblin; an imaginary being which our rude ancestors supposed to inhabit unfrequented places, and in various ways to affect mankind. . .

    2. An evil spirit; a devil. (Webster's Dictionary “elf”)

The Encyclopedia of Witches & Witchcraft is a 417 page paperback by Rosemary Ellen Guiley who is known as a thorough researcher. The following descriptions of elves are as quoted in Santa Claus The Great Imposter by Dr. Terry Watkins.

    A host of supernatural beings and spirits who exist between earth and heaven. . . Fairies [Elves] are fallen angels. When God cast Lucifer from heaven, the angels who were loyal to Lucifer plunged down toward hell with him. [71]

    Some fairies [elves] were said to suck human blood like vampires. [72]

    elves, "love to visit new born babies of mortals. . ." [72]

    "Many contemporary Witches believe in fairies [elves] and some see them clairvoyantly." [73] [TOP OF PAGE]

     

Part II. Santa Vs. The Bible
I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High. [Isaiah 14:14]

A Beard As White As Snow

    The Bible:
    And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle. His head and his hairs [BEARD] were white like wool, as white as snow;. . . Revelation 1:13-15.

    I beheld till the thrones were cast down, and the Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and the hair of his head like the pure wool: . . . Daniel 7:9.

    Santa Claus:   The poem The Night Before Christmas describes Old St. Nick as:

      "He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
      And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot;
      A bundle of toys he had flung on his back,
      And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.

      His eyes – how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
      His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
      His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
      And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow;" [TOP OF PAGE]

A Suit of Red

    The Bible:
    Who is this that cometh from Edom, with dyed garments from Bozrah? this that is glorious in his apparel, travelling in the greatness of his strength? I that speak in righteousness, mighty to save. Wherefore art thou red in thine apparel, and thy garments like him that treadeth in the winefat? Isaiah 63:1-2

    Santa Claus:
    Who wears boots and a suit of red  
    Santa wears boots and a suit of red

    Cap on head, suit that's red
    Special night, beard that's white

    Must be Santa Must be Santa
    Must be Santa, Santa Clause [TOP OF PAGE]
     

A CarpenterSc-Carpenter

    The Bible:
    Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses, and of Judah, and Simon? and are not his sisters here with us? And they were offended at him. Mark 6:3

    Santa Claus:
    Santa is a carpenter.  [TOP OF PAGE]
     

A House In The North

    The Bible:
    How art thou fallen from heaven, O day-star, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, that didst lay low the nations And thou saidst in thy heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; and I will sit upon the mount of congregation, in the uttermost parts of the north; I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.  [Isaiah 14:12-14. Emphasis Added]SC-North

    Santa Claus:
    Santa lives in the North Pole. The origin of Santa’s home at the North Pole is uncertain, but in “Santa and His Works” Nast may have been the first illustrator to so identify the locale.  (An 1857 illustration in Harper’s Weekly shows Santa preparing to leave a snowy but unnamed homeland.) [74]

Interestingly

    Since Thor’s element was fire, he was made into the god for the Yule tide.  Thor was a friendly god and during the Yule tide season, he delivered presents through the chimney because the hearth, being used for fire, was especially sacred to him.  In a chariot driven by two goats, Cracker and Gnasher, Thor roared across the heavens causing thunder. Thor was described as heavy built, with a long white beard and was dressed in red in keeping with his association with fire.  In a place called “Northland”, Thor lived in a palace surrounded by icebergs.  Thus Thor was a winter god who gave people encouragement during the bleak winter months. [75] Emphasis Added

Santa not only lives in the North Pole,  he gives people encouragement during the winter months.

    The Challenge of Thor [Henry Wadsworth Longfellow]
    I AM the God Thor,
    I am the War God,
    I am the Thunderer!
    Here in my Northland,
    My fastness and fortress,
    Reign I forever!

    Here amid icebergs
    Rule I the nations; …   [TOP OF PAGE]
     

A Holly Wreath

From The ancient Chinese to the Druids [who thought holly berries were thought to represent the sacred blood of their Goddess] and Romans, holly has been the subject of myths, legends, and traditional observances for centuries.

Many today believe that the actual "crown of thorns" worn by the Lord Jesus Christ, was the familiar "holly" wreath. In fact, in Germany, the Hawthorn is still known as Christdorn or "Christ's crown of thorns."

    Ancient history says that the Druids used holly in their religious rites long before the custom came to the European continent. The Druids of ancient Britain and Gaul held the English holly tree sacred. The "holy" connotation continued in later days in Europe, where the plant was widely believed to repel evil spirits. People planted trees and used their branches as protection against witchcraft, mad dogs, and other evils.

    Sometime in the past, the pagans of Europe took sprays of holly into their homes so that the tiny, imaginary peoples of the woodland would be safe from the cold of winter in the evergreen boughs. Later, holly was used as holiday decor that gave the good fairies and elves a place to hide as they did their good deeds. [Holly In Holiday Tradition.

    With the coming of Christianity, the use of holly was condemned as a pagan ritual and forbidden by the Christian council. But Christian Romans continued to decorate with holly during festive seasons. European Christian symbolism included the belief that the spiny leaves and red berries were a reminder of the crown of thorns and the blood of Christ. The Pennsylvania Dutch held that the plant's white flowers represented Jesus' purity. The Germans called this plant Christdorn, Christ's crown of thorns. They thought holly had white berries until they were stained by Christ's blood. [76] SC-Holly

    Santa Claus: Santa Wears a Wreath of Holly.

      Originating in England, Father Christmas was depicted as a friendly fellow wearing a crown of holly and a scarlet or green fur-lined robe. To many, this wreath of holly represented the crown of thorns that Jesus wore when He was crucified and the red berries are symbolic of the blood He shed." [77] [TOP OF PAGE]


A White Horse!

    The Bible:
    And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. [Revelation 19:11]

    Santa Claus:   SC-White-Horse2
    Most people are not aware that until the nineteenth century, Santa flew through the sky, visiting housetop to housetop, not in a sled drawn by reindeers — but on a white horse. It wasn’t until the poem, The Children’s Friend, was published in 1821 that the magical white horse was transformed into reindeer.

      On the eve of December 6, the myth told that this bearded, white-haired old “saint,” clad in a wide mantel, rode through the skies on a white horse. [78]

In Revelation 6, the Antichrist also appears on a white horse.

    And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer. [Revelation 6:2]. [TOP OF PAGE]

Ho, ho, ho

    The Bible:
    Ho, ho, flee from the land of the north, saith Jehovah; for I have spread you abroad as the four winds of the heavens, saith Jehovah. Ho Zion, escape, thou that dwellest with the daughter of Babylon. (Zechariah 2:6,7)

The Hebrew word translated Ho is [hôy ] and means  oh! ah, alas, O, woe.

    Santa Claus:
    Santa famous trademark is Ho! Ho! Ho!

Remember the Miracle plays.

      In these [Miracle] plays, the devil's common entry line, known as the "devil's bluster," was "Ho! Ho! Hoh!"  [79] [TOP OF PAGE]


Santa And His Sleigh

    The Bible:
    There is none like unto the God of Jeshurun, who rideth upon the heaven in thy help, and in hisSC-Sleigh Excellency on the sky. Deuteronomy 33:26.

    Santa Claus:
    As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
    When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
    So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
    With the sleigh full of toys, and St. Nicholas too

It’s also interesting in Ephesians 2:2, Satan, following the I will be like the most high script and mimicking the Lord, is depicted as "the prince of the power of the air. . ."

    Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Ephesians 2:2. [TOP OF PAGE]
     

Santa is Virtually Omniscient (All-knowing).

    The Bible:
    The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good. Proverbs 15:3

    For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him. 2 Chronicles 16:9.

    "The LORD is a God of knowledge..." (1Samuel.2:3)

    Will not God search this out? For he knoweth the secrets of the heart. [Psalm 44:21]

    Santa Claus:
    Children are taught that Santa knows things that only God Almighty can know.

      He sees you when you're sleeping, He knows when you're awake
      He knows if you've been bad or good So be good for goodness sake
          Santa Claus is Coming to Town

      Bobby wants a pair of skates,
      Suzy wants a sled
      Nellie wants a picture book,
      yellow, blue, and red
      Now I think I'll leave to you
      what to give the rest
      Choose for me, dear Santa Claus;
      you will know the best.
      "Jolly Old St. Nick"

      Be not therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him. [Matthew 6:8. Emphasis Addded]. [TOP OF PAGE]

Besides which…
 

Santa Rewards According to Works.

    The Bible:
    So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God. Romans 14:12

    And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. Revelation 20:12

    Santa Claus:
    But the children are accountable to Santa

      He's making a list, He's checking it twice
      He's gonna find out Who's naughty or nice.  [TOP OF PAGE]
       

Santa is Virtually Omnipotent (All-powerful).

    The Bible:
    Is anything too hard for the LORD? [Genesis 18:14]

    Santa Claus:
    Children are taught that no feat is too great for their Santa. No storm is big enough to stop his amazing ability to deliver gifts around the world in a twinkling of an eye. He defies the laws of nature and comes down the most narrow (and hottest) of chimneys. Lets not forget the millions upon millions of gifts produced in his ‘workshop’ and delivered each to the correct child.

    To the average child - Santa can do anything. Apart from requests for this doll or that train, Santa also gets some heartbreaking appeals for the restored health of a parent or sibling, the saving of a parents marriage, for peace in the house.

    Is anything too hard for Santa? [TOP OF PAGE]
     

Santa is Virtually Omnipresent (Present Everywhere).

    The Bible:  
    Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence? If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there. [Psalm 139:7-8]

    Santa Claus:
    To visit so many homes all over the world in one evening, requires nothing less than omnipresence. Prior to Christmas, Santa also appears at hundreds of street corners and shopping centers at the same time.

    Santa is Everywhere.  [TOP OF PAGE]
     

Santa Can Give You Anything. . Just Ask.

    The Bible:
    Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. . .[Matthew 7:7-8]

    And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive. [Matthew 21:22]

    Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. [Psalm 37:4]

    11 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him? [Matthew 7:11]

    Santa Claus: SC-Letter
    Each Christmas the U.S. Postal Service receives millions of letters addressed to "Santa Claus" In the weeks before Christmas millions of children around the globe with either/or write to Santa or visit him ‘in person’ with a list of their dearest desires. They will climb in to his lap and whisper and disclose the yearnings of their hearts. And come Christmas morning they will jump out of bed with gleeful anticipation to see what Santa has brought them.

      Lean your ear this way!
      Don't you tell a single soul
      What I'm going to say;
      Christmas Eve is coming soon;
      Now, you dear old man,
      Whisper what you'll bring to me;
      Tell me if you can.
      "Jolly Old St. Nick"

Santa is the great Giver of Gifts.. All you need to do is believe. Do You Believe in Santa??

    [On the other hand A child may receive little or nothing from Santa because his/her parents are poor. Unfortunately, the child has probably already learned that bad children get nothing from Santa, and come to the conclusion that he/she is ‘bad’]. [TOP OF PAGE]

The Fear of …Santa?

    The Bible:
    The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom:. . . Psalms 111:10

    Come, ye children, hearken unto me: I will teach you the fear of the LORD. Psalm 34:11.

    Santa Claus:
    But Children the world over are taught to fear Santa. "You’d better behave. Santa is watching and writing it all down. You might not get anything for Christmas."

      You better watch out,
      You better not cry
      You better not pout,
      I'm telling you why Santa Claus is comin' to town
      He's making a list,
      He's checking it twice
      He's gonna find out
      Who's naughty or nice.  [TOP OF PAGE]
       

Bring The Little Children Unto Me

    The Bible:
    And they brought young children to him, that he should touch them: and his disciples rebuked those that brought them. But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. Mark 10:13-14.SC-Child

    We love him, because he first loved us. 1 John 4:19

Santa Claus:
Oh, how he loves the little children.

    All the children of the world.
    Red and yellow, black and white,
    They are precious in his site.
    Santa loves the little children of the world.  [TOP OF PAGE]
     

Santa’s ‘Throne’

    The Bible:
    The LORD is in his holy temple, the LORD'S throne is in heaven: his eyes behold, his eyelids try, the children of men. [Psalm 11:4]

    And he said, Hear thou therefore the word of the LORD: I saw the LORD sitting on his throne, and all the host of heaven standing by him on his right hand and on his left. [1 Kings 22:19]

    11 And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. Revelation 20:11-12SC-Throne

    Santa Claus:
    Almost every local mall in the US has a Santa sitting on his ‘throne’ with the children lined up to sit on his lap and be asked the question  "Have you been a good little boy [or girl]?" There are other thrones in Scripture.

    For thou [Lucifer] hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: [Isaiah 14:13]. [TOP OF PAGE]

Satan’s Ultimate Goal is Worship.

    The Bible:
    All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it. If thou therefore wilt worship me, all shall be thine. [Luke 4:6,7]

    Santa Claus:  
    Millions of children love Santa with all their little hearts and quite literally worship him. Santa has replaced God at Christmas … aided and abetted by their parents.

    They stand in line to sit in his lap. They delight in having their picture taken with Santa. They love whispering in Santa’s ear.

“The distinguished anthropologist Claude Lévi-Strauss has provided a wonderful pen portrait of this Christmas icon: "Father Christmas is dressed in scarlet: he is a king. His white beard, his furs and his boots, the sleigh in which he travels evoke winter. He is called 'Father' and he is an old man, thus he incarnates the benevolent form of the authority of the ancients." Importantly, says Lévi-Strauss, children believe in him, paying homage to him with letters and prayers, while adults do not:”   [80]

But the Bible tells us

    And Jesus answered and said unto him, It is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve. [Luke 4:8]  [TOP OF PAGE]
     

Believe In Santa

    The Bible:
    And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. Acts 16:31

    The heart of the Christian faith is "believing" in the Lord Jesus Christ. Salvation is believing In Jesus Christ.

    Santa Claus:
    Yet, Many many more children will be asked at Christmas whether they believe in Santa than will be asked if they believe in Jesus. Santa will be preached hundreds of times more than Jesus… with parents as the chief evangelicals. "Little Boy, Little Girl, DO You Believe In Santa?"

If the Christian world had, even a small drop of the faith the average child has in Santa – we’d have revival overnight!

A Point to consider …

    “If you once believed in a man who knew what you were doing, who had amazing abilities, and who gave you nice things, and he turned out to be a fake, why should you believe in another man who knows what you are doing, has amazing abilities, gives you nice things--Jesus Christ? If you get burned once, why get burned the second time? Wouldn’t it be better to be honest with our children right from the start, and teach them the difference between truth and make-believe?” [81].   [TOP OF PAGE]


Ho! Ho! Ho! I Am God. . .
In 1994, the satire magazine The Onion carried a parody of Santa Claus titled "Ho! Ho! Ho! I Am God". Even though, it was written as a blasphemous parody much truth rings from the article. The article says:

    "I love visiting each and every one of your homes, stuffing your stockings with toys, and enjoying the milk and cookies you leave for me. But mostly I love Christmas because it's the celebration of the birth of my son, Jesus the Christ. You see, I'm God. . . Don't I look familiar? I'm old, I have a white beard, I love everyone. I'm the same God as the one you and your mommy and daddy worship on Sundays. . .

    Okay, I admit it. I'm not God. But I'm better than God. I'm jollier, and I give you real toys, not boring old psalms and empty promises you can only collect on when you die. Worship me, not Him! Worship Santa! I am God!" [82]

So he disguises the lie in a nice little package of make-believe and fantasy. He creates a harmless ol' jolly fellow that just loves little children. And most parents think, "Now what could be wrong with that?"

This Christmas Eve millions and millions of little children will climb into their beds "looking for their blessed hope and the glorious appearing" of Santa Claus.

There is not a Christian on the face of this earth looking for and longing for the Lord Jesus Christ as much as the average child is longing for their god Santa! A child's stolen faith in the coming of Santa puts the Christian's faith to shame.

They get so excited. . . Santa is coming! Satan is coming!  [TOP OF PAGE]


Conclusion

But It Is Just Fantasy. . .

“How long will people dodge the issue by saying this legend is a harmless tradition?

Who is this person whose jovial face greets us everywhere in our Christmas festivities, stores, schools, and cards? This is Santa, the god of Christmas, the children's friend, who is so imbedded in the hearts that we thrill to:

    "T'was the night before Christmas..."

A charming legend, an innocent fantasy? But whose place has he taken in the hearts of children? If we strip him of his disguise, we find a masterpiece of SATAN's subtlety, for the harmless, fun-provoking Santa has usurped the throne of childhood's heart and the charming legend has replaced "the sweetest story ever told."

This is the legend in brief that we recite and sing and picture to our children:

    Away up in the ice and snow lives Santa Claus in a great house of many rooms filled with every delightful thing that children love. Santa Claus is all-seeing and all-knowing. He sees what the children do. He hears all they say. He keeps a "Book of Remembrance" in which he records their words and their actions. Santa Claus comes down from the sky in a sleigh drawn by swift reindeer that "fly upon the wings of the wind and ride upon the clouds." It is filled with wonderful gifts. His coming is secret. When he comes he brings rewards to all good children and the gifts they have asked for.

What is the children's reaction to such a legend? "Santa Claus is our friend: he has all the good things we want, and he will give them to us if we are good."

is it any wonder they open their hearts to Santa Claus, strive to please him, talk and dream about him and wait and watch eagerly for him?

What about Jesus? He said, "Suffer the little children to come unto me," but we have put before our children that awful thing against which Sinai thundered; we have put another god before Him!

We have opened our homes to a thief, and have stood by and offered no resistance while he stole the heart of childhood. We have raised no voice in protest as he corrupted the minds and hearts of our children with a false image and a living imagination.

Why have we not lifted the standard of Jesus, the true God and tender Friend of children, who is not willing that "one of these little ones should perish." Why have we not feared lest we should "offend one of these little ones which believe" on Him?

The True Story

Christian mother, what has happened? You substitute the pagan legend of Santa Claus for the true story of God's love! How can you let Santa Claus take the place of Jesus in your child's heart? How can you encourage him to look to another for his joys rather than to Jesus, "the giver of every good and perfect gift?"

The clouds of judgment hang heavy. Terrible things are happening. Let us hasten to enthrone Jesus in our homes and tell the matchless story of God's "Unspeakable gift" to the world.

Instead of the vulgar Santa Claus, with his "nose like a cherry, and his little round belly that shakes...like a bowl full of jelly," let us captivate our children's imagination with the altogether lovely One, the "dear little Stranger, born in a manger." Let us delight their fancy with the story of the guiding star, with the Magi and their gifts for the new-born King. Let us inspire our children to give gifts to Him and in His name. Let us make Christmas "holy ground" in our homes this year”. [83] [TOP OF PAGE]

Having eyes, see ye not" Mark 8:18

 

End Notes

[1] Rev. Adrian Dieleman. Sermon on Daniel 1:1-7. November 20, 2005

[2] Who is Santa Claus?. http://rumela.com/events/christmas_santa.htm

[3] http://www.stnicholascenter.org/Brix?pageID=38

[4] Jones, Charles. W. "Knickerbocker Santa Claus." The New-York Historical Society Quarterly, October 1954, Volume XXXVIII Number Four, p.357. As Quoted in Santa Claus The Great Imposter by Dr. Terry Watkins.

[5] Del Re, Gerard and Patricia. The Christmas Almanack. New York: Random House, 2004, p. 131. As Quoted in Santa Claus The Great Imposter by Dr. Terry Watkins

[6] Articles on Ancient History. Saint Nicholas, Sinterklaas, Santa Claus.
http://www.livius.org/ne-nn/nicholas/nicholas_of_myra1.html

[7] Del Re, Gerard and Patricia. The Christmas Almanack. New York: Random House, 2004, pp. 138,141, As Quoted in Santa Claus The Great Imposter by Dr. Terry Watkins.

[8] Walsh, William S. The Story of Santa Klaus. Detroit: Gale Research Company, 1970, p. 54, As Quoted in Santa Claus The Great Imposter by Dr. Terry Watkins

[9] George H. McKnight, St. Nicholas: His Legend and His Role in the Christmas Celebration and Other Popular Customs (New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1917), McKnight has a collection of these legends in St. Nicholas, 37-88

[10] Dr. Richard P. Bucher. The Origin of Santa Claus and the Christian Response to Him

[11] St. Nicholas Center. Around The World. http://www.stnicholascenter.org/Brix?pageID=76

[12] St. Nicholas Center. Bulgaria. http://www.stnicholascenter.org/Brix?pageID=82

[13] Anise Hollingshead. St. Nicholas: The Story of Santa Clause.
http://holidays.kaboose.com/christmas/traditions/st-nicholas/xmas-around-stnicholas.html

[14] http://www.time4me.com/card/legend/SantaClaus.html

[15] http://www.statemaster.com/encyclopedia/Santa-Claus [16]

[16] Diana Tierney. Jolly Old Saint Nicholas The evolution of an Icon http://folktalesmyths.suite101.com/article.cfm/jolly_old_saint_nicholas

[17] Francis X. Weiser, Handbook of Christian Feasts and Customs. New York: Harcourt, Brace, and Company, 1958, 113-114

[18] Dr. Richard P. Bucher. The Origin of Santa Claus and the Christian Response to Him.

[19] "Santa Claus" Encyclopaedia Britannica 99. As Quoted in Santa Claus The Great Imposter by Dr. Terry Watkins.

[20] Crichton, Robin. Who is Santa Claus? The Truth Behind a Living Legend. Bath: The Bath Press, 1987, pp. 55-56. As Quoted in Santa Claus The Great Imposter by Dr. Terry Watkins.

[21] As Quoted in Santa Claus The Great Imposter by Dr. Terry Watkins

[22] Guerber, H.A. Myths of Northern Lands. New York: American Book Company, 1895, p. 61

[23] Weiser, Francis X. Handbook of Christian Feasts and Customs. New York: Harcourt, Brace & World, Inc., 1952, p. 113

[24] Ibid. p. 114

[25] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tomte

[26] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jenny_Nystr%C3%B6m

[27] Barth, Edna. Holly, Reindeer, and Colored Lights, The Story of the Christmas Symbols. New York: Clarion Books, 1971, p. 49. As Quoted in Santa Claus The Great Imposter by Dr. Terry Watkins.

[28] http://www.novareinna.com/festive/gift.html

[29] St. Nicholas Center. Saint Nicholas and the Origin of Santa Claus. http://www.stnicholascenter.org/Brix?pageID=35

[30] B. K. Swartz, Jr. The Origin Of American Christmas Myth And Customs.  http://www.bsu.edu/web/01bkswartz/xmaspub.html

[31] Jones, Charles. W. "Knickerbocker Santa Claus." The New-York Historical Society Quarterly, October 1954, Volume XXXVIII Number Four, p. 362. As Quoted in Santa Claus The Great Imposter by Dr. Terry Watkins.

[32] Siefker, Phyllis. Santa Claus, Last of the Wild Men: The Origins and Evolution of Saint Nicholas. Jefferson: McFarland & Company, Inc., 1997, pp. 5,7. As Quoted in Santa Claus The Great Imposter by Dr. Terry Watkins.

[33] Weiser, Francis X. Handbook of Christian Feasts and Customs. New York: Harcourt, Brace & World, Inc., 1952, p. 114. As Quoted in Santa Claus The Great Imposter by Dr. Terry Watkins.

[34] Irving, Washington. A History Of New York From The Beginning Of The World To The End Of The Dutch Dynasty: Paperback edition (2004) from Kessinger Publishing. p. 88-89

[35] Ibid. p. 98

[36] Robert C. Kennedy. Santa Claus and His Works.
http://www.harpweek.com/09Cartoon/BrowseByDateCartoon.asp?Month=December&Date=25

[36b] http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,1868506_1868508_1868530,00.html

[37] Del Re, Gerard and Patricia. The Christmas Almanack. New York: Random House, 2004, p. 70

[38]Ibid p. 75

[39] Ibid p. 94

[40] Renterghem, Tony van. When Santa Was a Shaman. St. Paul: Llewellyn Publications, 1995, p. 102

[41] Ibid Renterghem, Tony van. When Santa Was a Shaman. St. Paul: Llewellyn Publications, 1995, p. 102

[42] Siefker, Phyllis. Santa Claus, Last of the Wild Men: The Origins and Evolution of Saint Nicholas. Jefferson: McFarland & Company, Inc., 1997, p. 155

[43] "History of Santa Claus," www.christmas-decorations-gifts-store.com/history_of_santa.htm?

[44] "Santa Claus" Microsoft Encarta Encyclopedia 99)

[45] Miles, Clement A. Christmas in Ritual and Tradition Christian and Pagan. New York: Frederick A. Stokes Company, 1912, p. 232

[46] Del Re, Gerard and Patricia. The Christmas Almanack. New York: Random House, 2004, pp. 138,141

[47] Walsh, William S. The Story of Santa Klaus. Detroit: Gale Research Company, 1970, p. 54

[48] Renterghem, Tony van. When Santa Was a Shaman. St. Paul: Llewellyn Publications, 1995, p. 105

[49] Ibid p. 98

[50] Del Re, Gerard and Patricia. The Christmas Almanack. New York: Random House, 2004, pp. 93,94

[51] Paine, Albert Bigelow. Thomas Nast: His Period and His Pictures. New York: Chelsea House, 1980, p. 6

[52] Renterghem, Tony van. When Santa Was a Shaman. St. Paul: Llewellyn Publications, 1995, pp. 95-96

[53] Siefker, Phyllis. Santa Claus, Last of the Wild Men: The Origins and Evolution of Saint Nicholas. Jefferson: McFarland & Company, Inc., 1997, p. 15

[54] "Saint Nicholas," Wikipedia Encyclopedia. <en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Nicholas>

[55] Del Re, Gerard and Patricia. The Christmas Almanack. New York: Random House, 2004, p. 44

[56] Miles, Clement A. Christmas in Ritual and Tradition Christian and Pagan. New York: Frederick A. Stokes Company, 1912, p. 202

[57] Renterghem, Tony van. When Santa Was a Shaman. St. Paul: Llewellyn Publications, 1995, p. 97

[58] Renterghem, Tony van. When Santa Was a Shaman. St. Paul: Llewellyn Publications, 1995, p. 111

[59] qtd. in Siefker, Phyllis. Santa Claus, Last of the Wild Men: The Origins and Evolution of Saint Nicholas. Jefferson: McFarland & Company, Inc., 1997, p. 69

[60] Ireson, Frank. "The Drama Before Shakespeare - A Sketch." 1920. Also http://www.oldandsold.com/articles11/culture-44.shtml

[61] Siefker, Phyllis. Santa Claus, Last of the Wild Men: The Origins and Evolution of Saint Nicholas. Jefferson: McFarland & Company, Inc., 1997, p. 69

[62] Dodsley, Robert. A Select Collection of Old English Plays, Vol. VI. The Project Gutenberg Ebook.
www.gutenberg.org/dirs/etext06/7oep610.txt>) [Also http://www.fullbooks.com/A-Select-Collection-of-Old-English-Plays-Volx54484.html

[63] Renterghem, Tony van. When Santa Was a Shaman. St. Paul: Llewellyn Publications, 1995, p. 93)

[64] LaVey, Anton Szandor. The Satanic Bible. New York: Avon Books, Inc., 1969 p. 144

[65] Siefker, Phyllis. Santa Claus, Last of the Wild Men: The Origins and Evolution of Saint Nicholas. Jefferson: McFarland & Company, Inc., 1997, p. 6

[66] Encyclopedia of Occultism and Parapsychology, p.650. As Quoted in Santa Claus The Great Imposter by Dr. Terry Watkins

[67] Walter W. Sleay, Concise Dictionary of English Etymology, p. 304. As Quoted in Santa Claus The Great Imposter by Dr. Terry Watkins

[68] Oxford English Dictionary Vol III D-E. As Quoted in Santa Claus The Great Imposter by Dr. Terry Watkins

[69] Brewer's Dictionary of Twentieth-Century Phrase and Fable, p. 334

[70] Lori Mealey. Martin Luther and Christmas.   http://german-history.suite101.com/article.cfm/martin_luther_and_christmas

[71] Rosemary Ellen Guiley, The Encyclopedia of Witches and Witchcraft, p. 115

[72] Ibid p. 116

[73] Ibid p. 117

[74] Robert C. Kennedy. Santa Claus and His Works.
http://www.harpweek.com/09Cartoon/BrowseByDateCartoon.asp?Month=December&Date=25

[75] http://ottawa.humanists.net/Origins_files/Christmas.htm.

[76] Holly In Holiday Tradition. , Virginia Klara Nathan. Virginia Cooperative Extension.
http://www.ext.vt.edu/departments/envirohort/factsheets2/landsnurs/dec93pr1.html

[77] "Santalady's Favorite Antique Post Cards and Related Traditions Picture," www.santalady.com/cards.html

[78] Renterghem, Tony van. When Santa Was a Shaman. St. Paul: Llewellyn Pub., 1995, p. 111

[79] Siefker, Phyllis. Santa Claus, Last of the Wild Men: The Origins and Evolution of Saint Nicholas. Jefferson: McFarland & Company, Inc., 1997, p. 69

[80] Roger Highfield.. science editor of The Daily Telegraph in London. Modern Santa and Meaning The Physics of Christmas.
http://www.enotalone.com/article/4019.html

[81] http://rumela.com/events/christmas_santa.htm

[82] Santa Claus, "Ho! Ho! Ho! I Am God!" The Onion, 29 Nov. - 5 Dec., 1994, p. 7

[83] Santa, The Imposter. http://www.baptistpillar.com/bd0282.html

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