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The History of Saint Nicholas
Happy St. Nicholas Day!
I think you can call St. Nicholas the prototype of Santa.
St. Nicholas was born wealthy and his parents died while he was young. He committed to obeying Jesus’ words to “sell what you own and give the money to the poor” and used his whole inheritance to assist the needy, the sick, and the suffering. (If Scrooge was his guardian things might not have turned out so well.)
There are many legends of his good deeds, and some include him tossing coins of gold into the windows of needy families, which landed in their shoes/stockings that were left in front of the fire to dry. This led to the custom of children hanging stockings or putting out shoes, awaiting gifts from Saint Nicholas.
St. Nicholas Day is celebrated on December 6* and children leave shoes or stockings outside of their door or on the hearth. The next morning, if they were good, they may find a coin or simple gift, and often a candy cane (which represents his crozier, or staff/shepherd’s crook).
Do you celebrate St. Nicholas Day?
*Saint Nicholas Day, also called the Feast of Saint Nicholas, observed on 5 December or on 6 December in Western Christian countries
Insights on writing, characters, humor and other tidbits from the author of the "Scoops and Schemes" series of novels.
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