Christmas time is approaching and so there is going to be one main person called Santa Clause in the middle of attention. But not everywhere he is called so and not in every country he is actually he, somewhere he might be female as well.
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Saint Nicolas is actually a real person who lived 350 years ago in the city of Patara. The legend says that Nicolas was a rich boy who possessed a kind heart and was very generous. He saw that there were many children with no parents who didn’t have that many clothes to wear and such delicious food to eat as he did. So every year on December, 18th at night he went to the orphan house and put presents under the windows so the next morning children could wake up and find colorful books to read and many sweets and fruits to eat.
Read how Saint Nicolas has changes his name in America proceeding to the next page.
Santa Claus is more an American version of St. Nicolas having a look of a marry old man with red and white clothing. He lives on the North Pole with 8 reindeer the chief one of which is named Rudolph.
On December, 24th he can be seen flying on sledges in the sky. From time to time he stops, goes down the chimney with the presents and puts them into socks at the fireplace.
Read about Grandfather Frost on the following page.
Ded Moroz or Grandfather Frost
In the countries of Eastern Europe like Russia, Ukraine, Belarus etc. Grandfather Frost is accompanied by his granddaughter Snegurochka that is Snow Girl and he drives the sledges with three horses running side by side. He is also known as a highly skilled smith, whose powers include chaining the waters with iron frosts and painting the windows.
Get to know about Scandinavian Santa Claus on the next page.
Dutch Santa Claus is elderly, looks more like a pope than a jolly fat man, and wears stately robes. He hangs out with a guy named Black Peter and takes a steamboat over to Holland from Spain in mid-November. Those children who behaved well during the year get presents that are being dropped down the chimneys. And those children who have been naughty are being taken to the body bags and brought back to Spain.
Read about the female Santa Claus on the following page.
In Italy presents on Christmas are brought by a female representative – a friendly witch Befana. She leaves candies, figs, and goodies in good kids’ socks and coal – or dark candy – in bad kids’. If Santa has a cookie addiction, Befana is something of a wino, so parents leave out a glass of wine for the witch to enjoy after traveling across the sky on her broomstick.
Three Santa Clauses at the time? Can’t be! read about it on the next page.
In Puerto Rico Santa Clause is tripled. Here the Three Kings are the exciting gift givers of the holiday season. On January 6th, children fill up boxes with grass for the three kings’ camels to eat. The camels feast, and the three kings thank the generous children by replacing the grass with gifts and sweets.
Japanese have always had something to make everyone impressed. And so they do this time – on the following page.
Christmas in Japan is not associated with any old men clothed in red and with no gifts-sharing. It is spent with family doing charity work. But the winter holidays’ gift-giver in Japan still exists. It is a fat Buddhist monk with eyes in the back of his head. He comes on New Year’s Eve when the house is cleaned and decorated. Family members throw beans for good luck and await their gifts from the benevolent monk.
Read about how Nigerians celebrate Xmas on the next page.
Christmas in Nigeria is a time of joy and happiness. At the beginning of November you can feel that Christmas is approaching because all the radio and television stations start playing Christmas carols. On the 25th of December, you can see masquerades and dancing in some places. People enjoy going from one place to another, visiting places and friends in a joyful mood, and the celebrations are well worth seeing. Christmas cards are sent to friends and family members. Some parents take their children in their new outfits to see Father Christmas.
Look at the picture & see what other names are given to Santa Clause in different countries: