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  • Santa or Father Christmas?
  • Premier Icon SaxonRider
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    Because in Ukraine and Germany (my family’s extraction), there is a distinct emphasis on St Nicholas’ Day (Santa Claus), it is Father Christmas who comes on Christmas.

    What is he called in your house?

    Has ‘Santa’ become more common in recent years? Or in modern Britain, have the names been interchangeable for some time?

    ElShalimo
    Member

    Satan Claws

    johndoh
    Member

    100% interchangeable.

    loddrik
    Member

    Santa? Are you serious? That’s only one step away from talking about the boogeyman or ‘the holidays’!

    May as well start celebrating thanksgiving.

    Premier Icon P-Jay
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    Father Christmas in my house, if No1 starts talking about Santa I refuse to admit I know who he’s talking about, he’s onto me though.

    He’s 10 now though so we’ve largely lost the battle of keeping Father Christmas as fact rather than fiction, No2 is only 14 months and prefers wrapping paper to toys and doesn’t care which drunk fat man brings them.

    Premier Icon maccruiskeen
    Subscriber

    doesn’t care which drunk fat man brings them.

    I’ll send my next door neighbour round then. πŸ™‚

    votchy
    Member

    Father Christmas in our family

    You see those little white boxes in the top corner of the room? ….. those ones where the little red light comes on when anyone moves?….You thought they were the sensors for the alarm system, didn’t you?

    Wrong.

    Those are the SantaCams.

    The ones that Santa uses for surveillance of small, badly behaved children. Every time that wee red light comes on, an elf is watching you and recording your behaviour in a book.

    You have been warned……

    Bunnyhop
    Member

    Father Christmas here.

    Always Father Christmas.

    [video]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RbUVKXdu4lQ[/video]

    Premier Icon ads678
    Subscriber

    Bit off both really. Is Santa Claus and american thing then?

    smatkins1
    Member

    It was always Father Christmas in my household growing up… although this is one (and probably the only) Americanism I’m happy to accept.

    Santa sounds better… and isn’t the fat red man with a beard we’re referring to a Coca-Cola creation? So the American name Santa seems perfectly appropriate for him.

    *edit* should have watched the educational video!

    Premier Icon GrahamS
    Subscriber

    Interchangeable in our house.

    Santa / Father Christmas / The Man In Red

    “Santa” is probably used most often, purely for succinctness.

    Those are the SantaCams.

    We’ve been telling our eldest that since she was 2.

    Coming up to 6 she is getting suspicious. πŸ˜€

    Premier Icon SaxonRider
    Subscriber

    Santa is an American thing, insofar as the cross-fertilisation of cultures in New York (formerly New Amsterdam) saw Dutch observance of St Nicholas’ Day (Sinter Klaas) and the British and French versions of Father Christmas conflate into what Coca-Cola turned into the fat red man of Christmas advertising, and call Santa Claus.

    Premier Icon Drac
    Subscriber

    Santy.

    Father Christmas conflate into what Coca-Cola turned into the fat red man of Christmas advertising

    Errrr! No.

    Premier Icon SaxonRider
    Subscriber

    Not clear, Drac. Are you saying I got my facts wrong? I may have. I wrote that from memory. But if, so please correct.

    Every time that wee red light comes on, an elf is watching you and recording your behaviour in a book.

    Are you sure that’s Santa’s elves and not Theresa May?

    Premier Icon GrahamS
    Subscriber

    Santa is an American thing, insofar as the cross-fertilisation of cultures in New York (formerly New Amsterdam) saw Dutch observance of St Nicholas’ Day (Sinter Klaas) and the British and French versions of Father Christmas conflate into what Coca-Cola turned into the fat red man of Christmas advertising, and call Santa Claus.


    Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.
    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 pedler just opening his pack.
    His eyesβ€”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 on his chin was as white as the snow;
    The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
    And the smoke, it encircled his head like a wreath;
    He had a broad face and a little round belly
    That shook when he laughed, like a bowl full of jelly.
    He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
    And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself;
    A wink of his eye and a twist of his head
    Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread;

    — excerpt from A Visit from St. Nicholas published in 1823

    You can already hear quite a few of the modern “Santa” tropes there: fat, jolly, rosy cheeks, fur, bag of toys, pipe (though less so these days!), coming down the chimney.

    No mention of red though, but even Coke say that Santa was pictured wearing red before they got to him.

    Premier Icon Drac
    Subscriber

    Not clear, Drac. Are you saying I got my facts wrong? I may have. I wrote that from memory. But if, so please correct.

    You believed a myth, ironic really, as GrahamS points out he was in that format before they got him. Cola have a good advertisement campaigns so people remember their image and then believe the story they created the image.

    Premier Icon GrahamS
    Subscriber

    Snopes says No. (but with little bits of maybe).

    Premier Icon SaxonRider
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    Yes, but the author of A Visit from St Nicholas was American, writing at the time that said cross-fertilisation would already have occurred.

    The red of St Nicholas is derived from the fact that red is the liturgical colour of martyrdom in the Latin Church, and St Nicholas himself died as one in the 4th century. But it is significantly different to the red suit sported by Coke’s version.

    Not that I’m complaining.

    mrsfry
    Member

    How will Santa get past imigration control, let alone his helpers ? also what about clearnece to use UK airspace πŸ™

    Premier Icon GrahamS
    Subscriber

    St Nicholas himself died as one in the 4th century

    What killed him? Was it the flue?

    Premier Icon SaxonRider
    Subscriber

    But it’s the conflation of the two celebrations (St Nicholas’ Day and Christmas) that is of greatest interest, and confusion.

    St Nick has long been seen as a ‘Christmas saint’ because his feast is 6 December, and children are traditionally given gifts by him. The Christmas gift-giving figure (Father Christmas) is derived more from the ‘spirit of giving’ that Christmas is supposed to be about – and which Dickens illustrates in A Christmas Carol.

    Premier Icon SaxonRider
    Subscriber

    Scratch that. He wasn’t a martyr, but the Western (Latin) Church still depicts him in red.

    The Eastern (Greek) Church depicts him in any variety of colours.

    I just made the martyr thing up. Sorry. 😳

    Premier Icon Drac
    Subscriber

    But it is significantly different to the red suit sported by Coke’s version.

    Maybe so but they didn’t create the image.

    Maybe it was these guys?

    Mr Woppit
    Member

    I just made the martyr thing up.

    Don’t worry. The rest of it’s all been made up too.

    St Nicholas himself died as one in the 4th century
    What killed him? Was it the flue?

    Or possibly Claus-trophobia
    Of course back in the 4th century there was no elf and safety …

    Premier Icon Drac
    Subscriber

    Don’t worry. The rest of it’s all been made up too.

    Of course back in the 4th century there was no elf and safety …

    Good times.

    Premier Icon SaxonRider
    Subscriber

    Mr Woppit – Member
    I just made the martyr thing up.
    Don’t worry. The rest of it’s all been made up too.

    Hi Woppit.

    I wondered when you would drop in.

    Happy Christmas to you, when it comes! πŸ˜€

    Premier Icon SaxonRider
    Subscriber

    But since you mention it, while it is entirely within your right and prerogative to say that the content of the gospels has been made up, the history subsequent to the gospel narrative certainly hasn’t.

    But I’m sure that’s not what you were suggesting.

    Premier Icon slowoldman
    Subscriber

    Who? Doesn’t visit here.

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