What Is St Nicholas The Patron Saint Of

Who Was St. Nicholas?

We know relatively little about the life of St. Nicholas from historical records. Not even his death date, which is December 6, is known for definite, despite the fact that both the Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches have commemorated it for more than 1,000 years. After his death, Nicholas became the subject of a slew of folk tales that continued for more than a century after his death. In addition to saving condemned sailors by halting a fierce storm, he was credited with providing financial assistance to a father who was forced to sell his daughters into prostitution and even bringing back to life a trio of boys who had been dismembered by an unscrupulous butcher.

He is also widely regarded as the basis for the character of Santa Claus.

The legend of St.

In the Netherlands, St.

  1. A tall, white-haired man dressed in red clerical robes was described as arriving by boat on December 6 to deliver presents or coal lumps to children’s orphanages across the world.
  2. Washington Irving depicted St.
  3. Nicholas that became widely popular over time.
  4. Nicholas did not reside in Turkey, Spain, or Holland, but rather at the North Pole, back in 1879.

Patron Saint

Saint Nicholas is the patron saint of children, sailors, students, brides, the hungry, and a variety of other things. G. E. Mullan’s prayer card is seen below. Permission has been granted to use. All intellectual property rights are retained. Purchase a gift card Saint Nicholas is considered to be the patron saint of almost everyone, and he has undoubtedly been designated as the patron saint of more causes than any other saint. Countless classes of individuals, towns, churches, and even whole countries have entrusted Nicholas with the responsibility of special protection or guardianship.

  • Saint Nicholas is most well-known in the Western world as the patron saint of children.
  • The narrative of three tiny children who were enticed into the hands of a wicked butcher and saved by St.
  • Other traditions relate of children who have gone missing, have been abducted, have fallen into a well, or have suffered some other disaster—all of whom were saved by the benevolence of St.
  • Because of the universal appeal of these narratives of a child who has been stolen from his or her parents, followed by a period of grief and despair, and then the miraculous return of the child, Nicholas is often regarded as the Guardian of Children.
  • In other areas of the globe, however, St.
  • There are icons of Nicholas that are surrounded by ex-votos of little ships made of silver or carved from wood in a number of ports, most notably in Greece.
  • Nicholas for the protection they have received.

Nicholas hold the tiller” is used by sailors in some regions instead of “May St.

Nicholas.

The experiences of innocent soldiers whose lives were saved and those who had been wrongfully imprisoned were freed serve as the foundation for this category.

The Basilica di San Nicola in Bari, Italy, is still visited by young ladies who desire to get married on the 6th of December, when they drop off a message to St.

Seeing the scope of Nicholas’ tremendous impact and patronage on these lists is illuminating.

People The names “Nicholas” are used to refer to places, churches, other organizations, and other things. return to the beginning Tarpon Springs, Florida, with a sponge boat. Collection of postcards from the St. Nicholas Center

About St. Nicholas – Patron Saint Article

Holy Card Image of Saint Nicholas with Children with a Bowl of Oranges on a White Background St. Nicholas is the patron saint of children and young people in general. His generous heart and affection for children paved the way for the widespread practice of the gift-giving Santa Claus, which is now recognized all over the world as a holiday celebration. St. Nicholas was born into a wealthy family and orphaned as a child. After giving away his property to the poor, he committed his life to serving God as a priest and, subsequently, as a bishop in the Orthodox Church.

  • Nicholas covertly slipped money bags down chimneys to assist poor families’ daughters marry rather than being sold into slavery.
  • Nicholas.
  • Nicholas’ hometown held him in high regard, and his burial location is still a popular pilgrimage destination to this day.
  • Nicholas is commemorated on the 6th of December.
  • +++++++++++++ The most common associations people have with St.
  • But why is this so?
  • St.

He was raised in a well-to-do Christian household that was both rich and religious.

Nicholas bequeathed a considerable portion of his fortune to the poor and needy.

The people of Myra appreciated him for his kindness and fondness for children, among other qualities.

Boys who had been butchered are being restored by St Nicholas.

Nicholas demonstrate his inherent selflessness, as well his dedication to the protection of children, which can be found in many of his works.

For a woman to be accepted for marriage back then, she had to provide an adequate dowry for her prospective husband.

This father had three daughters, but he lacked the financial means to pay for any of their dowries.

In response to the man’s predicament, St.

The gold bags fell in the stockings/shoes of family members who had placed them near the fireplace to keep them warm as they slept.

As a result of this narrative, children began to hang their own stockings and shoes near their fireplaces in the hopes that St.

Another legend about St.

Because of a big storm that occurred while they were sailing, the waters had become treacherous, and the sailors were terrified.

Nicholas is revered as a patron saint of sailors and others who travel by water, and he is sometimes referred to as “St.

Nicholas and his horse.

Nicholas joined the Council of Nicaea in 325, he did so in order to fight against a heresy that was being promoted by a man named Arius.

When Arius spoke, several bishops listened intently and were on the verge of agreeing with him, until St.

Nicholas.

On December 6, 343 in the city of Myra, St.

His remains were laid to rest in the church.

The oil that emanates from his body continues to this day (it is referred to as the “manna of St. Nicholas”), which is supposed to have medicinal capabilities. There are many pilgrims that come to Bari to pay their respects at his burial place.

St. Nicholas’ Feast Day

The feast day of St. Nicholas is commemorated on the 6th of December. One of the most popular traditions stems from the narrative of St. Nicholas sending the gold bags via the chimney, and many youngsters will leave their stockings or shoes out in the anticipation of getting a present from him. In various languages, the name St. Nicholas is pronounced similarly to the term “Santa Claus.” This is the region in which the practice of Santa Claus distributing presents to children first began to be observed.

St. Nicholas In Art

When St. Nicholas appears in art, he is frequently shown in the garb of a bishop, complete with mitre and staff. As a reminder of the myth of him assisting the father who had the three daughters, he frequently wears a beard and is occasionally shown with gold ornaments.

Shop St. Nicholas Medals and Rosaries

a religious medallion depicting St. Nicholas and his children

St. Nicholas Medals

When Saint Nicholas is shown on a religious medal, he is nearly invariably depicted in the role of a bishop, complete with mitre and crosier. In addition, St. Nicholas pendants frequently depict him with children, three balls, or oranges, among other things.

Patronages of St Nicholas:

  • Children, sailors, bankers, orphans, the destitute, unmarried women, slaves, and students are among those who suffer.

St. Nicholas Prayers

God of pleasure and gladness, we express our gratitude to you for sending us your servant, the excellent bishop Nicholas. He shown your goodwill to us by caring for the needy; he demonstrated your love for your children by caring for them. Create in us the ability to be considerate without the need for incentives in order for us to become excellent disciples of Jesus.

A Prayer for Children

God, we hope that you would lead and safeguard our children via the intercessions of St. Nicholas, and we thank you for everything. Keep them safe from any danger and assist them in their development into loving followers of Jesus in your sight, we pray. Give them the courage to continue to evolve into deeper trust in you and to maintain a sense of wonder at the wonders of your creation. Through the intercession of Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen. —from Father David R. Engbarth of St Nicholas Catholic Church in Aurora, Illinois.

Saint Nicholas

Saint Nicholas was a Christian bishop who supplied for the needy and ill and is the origin for the iconic persona of Santa Claus.

Who Was Saint Nicholas?

Saint Nicholas was a Christian bishop who devoted his life to assisting the poor. Following his death, the tale of his gift-giving spread even farther. Saint Nicholas was converted into the renowned persona known as Santa Claus, who is responsible for delivering Christmas gifts to children all over the world.

Early Life

Saint Nicholas was born about the year 280 in Patara, Lycia, which is now a part of the modern-day Turkish Republic. The young man lost both of his parents when he was a small boy. He apparently utilized his fortune to assist the destitute and sick. He was a pious Christian who ultimately rose to the position of bishop of Myra, which is today known as Demre.

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Reputation

Saint Nicholas of Myra is the subject of several stories and folklore. One narrative talks of him assisting three impoverished sisters. Their father did not have enough money to pay their dowries and contemplated selling them into slavery in order to supplement his income. A total of three times, Saint Nicholas made a surprise visit to their home at night and left a bag of money at the door.

The money was used by the guy to arrange for one of his daughters to marry. The guy saw Saint Nicholas on his third visit and expressed his gratitude to him for his generosity. He is also said to have rescued the lives of three persons who had been wrongfully imprisoned and condemned to death.

Death and Legacy

Saint Nicholas is supposed to have died on December 6, 343 according to a number of different accounts. His miracles and charitable work for the poor expanded throughout the world as word of his miracles and charitable work for the destitute spread. He gained notoriety as a defender of children and seafarers, and he was also linked with the distribution of gifts. At least until the Reformation in the 1500s, he was a popular saint throughout Europe. The Reformation was a theological movement that resulted in the foundation of Protestantism, which rejected the practice of honoring religious figures such as saints.

  1. The Dutch continued to commemorate the feast of Saint Nicholas, which took place on December 6.
  2. They would find the presents that Saint Nicholas had left for them when they woke up the next morning.
  3. While in America, Saint Nicholas underwent several transformations: Sinterklaas became Santa Claus, and instead of presenting presents on December 6, he became an integral part of the Christmas season.
  4. Santa Claus, as seen in an 1881 painting by cartoonist Thomas Nast, contributed to the tradition of Saint Nicholas by donning a red outfit with white fur trim.
  5. In 2017, a team from the University of Oxford radiocarbon tested a piece of a pelvic bone that was thought to have belonged to Saint Nicholas.
  6. The results of the test indicated that the bone fragment, which belonged to an American priest, belonged to the saint’s time period.

Fact Check

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St. Nicholas – Saints & Angels

Across history, St. Nicholas has been held in high regard, and the large number of altars and churches built in his honor throughout the world are testaments to his extraordinary holiness and the splendor that he enjoys with God in heaven. As an episcopal post became available due to the closure of his boyhood church, the holy Nicholas was appointed bishop, and throughout his tenure as bishop, he became well-known for his exceptional devotion and enthusiasm, as well as for his numerous miraculous occurrences.

Saint Nicholas is reported to have died at Myra and been buried in the cathedral dedicated to him.

Nicholas’ episcopate in Myra during the fourth century appears to be the only thing that appears to be unquestionably legitimate.

Methodius, Patriarch of Constantinople, who died in 847 and is commemorated in the church’s calendar. Nonetheless, considering the saint’s widespread popularity for so many centuries, it is necessary to provide a brief summary of the traditions surrounding his life.

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Help Now “Nikolaos of Myra” was a fourth-century saint and Greek bishop of the city of Myra who was also known as “Nikolaos of Myra.” Nicholas was born as an only child to Christian parents in Asia Minor under the Roman Empire.

In accordance with the canons, Nicholas would only have food once a day on Wednesdays and Fridays, and that would be in the evening.

While being cared after by the church, he gained greater clarity of thought and increased his desire for genuine and authentic religion.” While still a young man, his parents sadly perished during an epidemic, leaving him financially secure but with the responsibility of being reared by his uncle, the Bishop of Patara.

  1. Soon after, an opportunity presented itself for St.
  2. Patara resident had lost all of his money and needed to maintain his three daughters, who were unable to find spouses because of their poverty.
  3. The man’s residence had an open window, and Nicholas learned of this and got a bag of gold and tossed it through the open window in the middle of the night.
  4. When the second and third time came around, Nicholas repeated his actions for the father, who recognized his benefactor and expressed his thanks to Nicholas in overwhelming fashion.
  5. In the city of Myra, when the clergy and people of the province were convening to elect a new bishop, St.

There were persecutions at the beginning of the fourth century, and this occurred during that time “Because he was the chief priest of the Christians in this town and preached the truths of faith in a spirit of holy liberty, the divine Nicholas was apprehended by the magistrates, tortured, then chained and thrown into prison, along with a large number of other believers.

  • Methodius claims that “thanks to the teaching of St.
  • Nicholas’ presence at the Council of Nicaea in 325.
  • Nicholas was not only present at the Council of Nicaea in 325, but that he even lost himself long enough to smack the heresiarch Arius in the face.
  • St.
  • He served as the people’s protector in both temporal and spiritual matters.
  • Nicholas arrived at the location where the captives were to be executed at the scheduled hour, stayed the executioner’s hands, and freed the inmates.
  • The presence of St.

After they returned to Constantinople, the prefect Ablavius’ jealousy caused them to be imprisoned on bogus accusations and an order for their execution was obtained from the Emperor Constantine, who ordered their execution.

At midnight the same night, St.

The following morning, the Emporor and the prefect exchanged notes, and the condemned men were apprehended and interrogated in their prison cells.

Since the time of St.

Nicholas, and it was also the only item that was well known about him at the time of St.

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There are no conflicting stories of St.

In the eleventh century, an unknown Greek author stated that “Both the West and the East have praised and extolled his virtues.

Images of him are erected, panegyrics are preached, and festivals are held in his honor.

And his benefits, which have no time limit and last from generation to generation, are poured out across the entire world; the Scythians, as well as the Indians and barbarians, the Africans and the Italians, are all aware of his generosity.” When Myra and her vast shrine were ultimately captured by the Saracens, numerous Italian cities viewed this as a chance to obtain the relics of St.

  • Between Venice and Bari, there was fierce competition for their services.
  • The remains of St.
  • The relics were housed in a new church, which was dedicated in the presence of Pope Bd.
  • St.

When the bishop’s body was embalmed in excellent ointments of virtue at Myra, “a sweet-smelling myrrh poured forth from it, which protected it from decomposition and proved to be a health-giving medicine against sickness to the glory of him who had exalted Jesus Christ, our true God,” Although the relics were moved, this phenomena continued, and the “manna of St.

  • There were many great attractions that drew pilgrims to his tomb from all over Europe, and it was one of the most popular.
  • Nicholas appears on Byzantine seals more frequently than any other figure in the history of the world.
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  • We know it’s a little embarrassing to ask, but we really need your assistance.
  • We are not salespeople, but we rely on donations, which average $14.76 and are made by less than one percent of our readers each month.
  • Thank you very much.
  • Nicholas is venerated as the patron saint of a variety of groups of people, including sailors in the East and children in the West, and he is especially revered as the patron saint of children in the East.

Sailors in the Aegean and Ionian seas, following a common Eastern custom, wore their “star of St.

Nicholas hold the tiller.” Sailors in the Mediterranean and Ionian seas, following a common Eastern custom, wore their “star of St.

This ritual in England is not a holdover from the time of the Catholic Church.

It is not the only “excellent old English ritual” that, despite its merits, does not qualify as “old English,” at least not in its current form.

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Nicholas was naturally called by and on behalf of prisoners and captives as a result of the release of the three imperial officers, and many miracles of his intervention were recorded during the Middle Ages as a result of his involvement.

Nicholas is located in Russia, not the eastern Mediterranean or north-western Europe, despite the fact that these regions were once renowned for their veneration of the saint.

Andred the Apostle, and the Russian Orthodox Church even celebrates the feast of his translation; before the revolution, so many Russian pilgrims came to Bari that the Russian government supported the construction of a church, hospital, and hospice there.

The Basilica of St.

In the preparation of the Byzantine Mass, he is referred to by his given name.

Nicholas was acknowledged as a saint even before the Roman Catholic Church began the normal canonization procedures in the late 10th century, when he was born in the city of Myra.

Consequently, he does not have a definite date of canonization, but rather records of him exist in a gradual spread until his stories became well-known and venerated around the world. The feast day of St. Nicholas is celebrated on December 6.

St. Nicholas, Patron Saint of Bakers and Brides and Children

Nicholas was born in Asia Minor, in modern day Turkey, then in the Roman Empire. He was the only child of Christian parents. The child, watched over by his family and the Christian community, became very religious. His parents died during an outbreak of plague when he was very young. His uncle, the Bishop of Patara, became his guardian. Nicholas was left a considerable sum of money by his parents, which he gave away to a poor man and his family. With this act of charity, Nicholas saved the man’s three daughters from a life of prostitution. Nicholas gave the money secretly, and he would leave a bag of money for the poor family at night, who never discovered who their benefactor was. St Nicholas was widely loved for his charity throughout his life.Nicholas moved to the city of Myra in modern Turkey. Because of his piety and charity, he was elected as bishop by the Christians, as was the custom at that time. During the persecution by the pagan emperor Galerius, Nicholas was arrested and thrown in prison. Nicholas’ life was in great danger. However, after Constantine the Great’s victory over Galerius, Nicholas was released from prison with the other Christians, and returned to his duties as Bishop.Nicholas was an able bishop, and led the local Christians and ensured that they were not tainted by any of the heresies that were so common in the period. According to some traditions, the saint attended the Council of Nicaea and helped draw up the Nicene Creed that is still central to Catholic theology.Nicholas was a zealous missionary, and helped convert many pagans in remote areas of Asia Minor. He was also tireless in the pursuit of justice, and in one instance saved three condemned men from execution.The accounts all agree that St. Nicholas died and was buried in the city of Myra. St Nicholas became a much loved saint, and there are churches and altars dedicated to him all over the Christian World from India to Ireland.Today his relics rest in the Basilica of Bari in southern Italy.In the eastern Orthodox Church, it is widely believed that St. Nicholas appears to sailors during storms at sea and guides them to safety.In the western Catholic Churches, St. Nicholas is associated with the giving of gifts at Christmas time because of his many charitable works. He is widely believed to have been the inspiration for Father Christmas and Santa Claus.Nicholas believed that charity was essential for every Christian -when we are charitable, we are imitating Christ.He said that “The giver of every good and perfect gift has called upon us to mimicHis giving, by grace, through faith, and this is not of ourselves.”St. Nicholas is still a beloved saint around the world.

The Real Saint Nicholas

For many Christians, Saint Nicholas, the forerunner of Santa Claus, is no longer a historical figure to be admired. He is especially revered by Eastern Catholics and Orthodox, and he continues to intercede on their behalf even now, as one of the most popular saints. Saint Nicholas is the patron saint of children, travelers, individuals looking for wives, and a variety of other causes as a result of his remarkable life and the witness of miraculous events. The day of his feast is December 6. St.

  • Father Palis, pastor of the Dormition of the Theotokos Greek Orthodox Parish in New York City, translates the lives of saints from Greek to English for the congregation.
  • He is truly a Saint.
  • This potentially unpleasant inquiry regarding the historical foundation of Nicholas the Archangel is generously answered by Father Palis: “You’ve got his relics that produce myrrh in Bari, Italy, and other sections of his relics in other areas of the world!
  • He was born in the year 280 and established his see on the Mediterranean shore, in the same region where Saint Paul had originally preached the gospel a few hundred years before.
  • He was such a committed and saintly bishop that, much like Mother Teresa today, he was soon recognized as a saint by the general public and clergy.
  • Emperor Constantine, who had released Christians, including Nicholas, from imprisonment and torture during the Diocletian persecution, commissioned the construction of a cathedral to hold these venerated relics.
  • Recently, the Holy See granted approval for the restoration of some relics of Saint Nicholas to the Greek Orthodox Church in Flushing, New York, where they are housed at Saint Nicholas Orthodox Church.

At the event in December 1972, Archbishop Iakovos, then the Greek Orthodox primate of North and South America, was joined by the late Bishop Francis Mugavero, Roman Catholic bishop of Brooklyn in New York, who served as the main celebrant.

As a result, Nicholas of Myra is sometimes referred to as Nicholas of Bari.

He explains that “they are a symbol of the purity of Nicholas’s life,” that his body is uncorrupt and pleasant even in death, as Father Palis explains.

As a result of his research, Palis raises the question of whether or not there was more than one Nicholas in the historical record.

This abbot journeyed to the Holy Land and back, and he is credited with performing miracles at sea on the route.

If this is the case, it would explain some of the inconsistencies in Nicholas’ brief history.

Other stories have Nicholas as the abbot of the monastery who was elevated to the position of bishop.

Witness to the Power of Love Father Palis argues that the name Nicholas is derived from two Greek words, Niki (“victory”) and laos (“people”), which mean “victory of the people.” As a result, Nicholas denotes a person who has achieved victory in the eyes of the people.

“I believe Saint Nicholas inspires individuals to emulate his characteristics of compassion, love, and enthusiasm on a consistent basis.” According to Father Palis, while most people are focused on Saint Nicholas’ compassion, they overlook one of his most important virtues: austerity.

If Jesus could do all of these miracles and have such a godly devotion, he must have been an exceptionally saintly individual.” It is the account of Nicholas’ ordination that Father Palis finds so poignant.

In prayer, the bishops were instructed to apprehend the next individual who ran into the church and elevate him to the position of bishop via divine revelation.

He is a model of commitment.

The image of St.

According to some accounts, there are more churches named after Saint Nicholas than after any other saint, with the probable exception of those named for the Blessed Mother.

They referred to Nicholas as the patron saint of all travelers, including airline passengers, in the advertisement.

He was persecuted as a result of his religious beliefs.

He endured torture in jail and lived through the tremendously difficult years of the newly emancipated Church clarifying its principles.

Followers of these two individuals practically rioted in the streets against one another.

However, the debate over the notion of Jesus’ divinity raged on for decades after his death.

According to legend, he was censured until the same bishops had a dream in which God instructed them to restore Nicholas to his position.

No matter how genuine or false this account turned out to be, it placed Nicholas solidly on the side of those who declared Jesus to be “in being with the Father” in the effort to capture the minds and hearts of Christians during that time period.

Nicholas and Jesus are two of the most important people in the world.

Nicholas, which takes place in the days before Christmas, to concentrate our attention on Jesus.

He was deeply committed to charitable work, but he saw charity as being inextricably related to justice.

Those imprisoned for political reasons across the world, as well as those who have been falsely accused, may all bear witness to the face of Jesus in our modern world.

Finally, Saint Nicholas teaches us how to discover Jesus via prayer and religious enthusiasm in the final chapter of his life.

That person embodies the genuine Christmas spirit.

It is said that Nicholas once traveled across the sea on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, and this is the most well-known story.

They came to the holy bishop and pleaded with him to intervene on their behalf.

The sailors were taken aback and expressed their gratitude to God.

He came back to life when Nicholas prayed for him and baptized him.

Throughout his life, he urged his followers to convert their hearts to God and repent of their sins.

They went by the names of Nepotian, Ursyna, and Apollyn.

Nicholas invited them to join him and other dignitaries from the town for a dinner party.

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It is unclear whether the consul intended to assist the rebellion or steal the money from the princes.

Even as the executioner raised his sword above the heads of the princes, Nicholas stormed into the room and blocked the executioner!

After that, he confronted the corrupt consul, who later repented of his actions.

After reaching an agreement with the leaders of the rebellion, they embarked on a voyage to Constantinople, where the emperor awaited their report of success.

One of them was successful in convincing the others to pray to Nicholas.

The moment they heard the news, they immediately fell to their knees and thanked God!

Over the years, Saint Nicholas has interceded in the courts on behalf of a large number of people who have been wrongfully accused.

His father and mother died when he was a child, leaving him as the son of wealthy parents.

Wealth and poverty coexisted in those days, just as they do today, and this was no exception.

The family was so impoverished that they were unable to feed themselves.

When faced with starvation, their only option would be to turn to prostitution for survival.

That’s exactly what he found when he woke up the next morning!

As a result, the oldest daughter was able to tie the knot.

By now the father wanted to know who was behind this magnificent act. The night he heard the third bag of gold hit the floor beneath his window, he rushed out and caught up with the fleeing Nicholas. The saint swore him to secrecy, but eventually the story got out.

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It doesn’t take a genius to figure out where Santa Claus comes from: the North Pole. His historical excursion, on the other hand, is both lengthier and more amazing than his yearly, one-night round of the world. A mythology of Santa Claus developed across northern Europe, and he ultimately took on his current appearance on the coasts of the New World, where he was born in the Mediterranean during the Roman Empire. Who is this progenitor of Santa Claus, and how has he changed over history? For further information, see “Christmas in July—Inside a Santa Summer Camp.”

Jolly Old St. Nicholas?

Every year on December 6, the faithful gather in towns all over the world to commemorate St. Nicholas Day, with the major celebrations taking place in Europe. While there are many different depictions of St. Nicholas, none of them look anything like the red-cheeked, white-bearded elderly guy who may be found everywhere today. Modern forensic face reconstruction techniques were used to produce one of the most striking depictions of the genuine St. Nick, who lived in the third and fourth centuries and lived in the third and fourth centuries.

  • Nicholas’s remains continues to this day, but it has long been believed that the bones of the Greek bishop were stolen by Italian sailors during the 11th century and transported to the crypt of the Basilica di San Nicola on the Italian coast’s southeast coast.
  • ” Could the Remains of Santa Claus Be in This Turkish Church?” (For speculations on other probable resting sites for St.
  • Wilkinson gave Santa’s original namesake a human face, one with a terribly damaged nose, which may have occurred during the persecution of Christians under the Roman Emperor Diocletian, according to historical accounts.
  • Two-dimensional data was used to reconstruct the size and shape of the facial muscles that originally covered Nicholas’s skull, and three-dimensional data from two-dimensional data was used to reconstruct the shape of Nicholas’s skull itself.

When working from photographs, Wilkinson admits that “we are bound to have lost some of the level of detail you would get from working from life,” but he believes that “this is the closest we are ever going to get to him.” The project’s feature film, The Real Face of Santa, which aired on BBC Two, was a documentary about the project.

From bishop to gift giver

How did this St. Nicholas become the bringer of Christmas presents from the North Pole, where he now resides? The first saint was a Greek who lived in the late third century, approximately 280 A.D., and was martyred. He was elevated to the position of bishop of Myra, a tiny Roman town in modern Turkey. However, during the Great Persecution in 303, when Bibles were burned and priests were forced to recant their Christian beliefs or face execution, Nicholas gained a reputation as a fiery, wiry and uncompromising supporter of church teaching.

  1. Nicholas’s renown lasted for a long time after his death (which occurred on December 6 in the mid-fourth century, about 343) because he was linked with several miracles, and veneration for him continues to this day, regardless of whether or not it is associated with Christmas.
  2. Nicholas rose to prominence among the saints as a result of his role as patron saint of a large number of organizations.
  3. During the most well-known version of the story, three young girls are spared from a life of prostitution when young Bishop Nicholas sends three bags of gold to their indebted father, which may be used to pay for their dowries.
  4. Nicholas walked into an inn whose keeper had recently murdered three lads and pickled their mutilated remains in cellar barrels.
  5. Not only did the bishop detect the crime, but he also brought the victims back to life.
  6. Nicholas was the undisputed bringer of presents and the toast of celebrations centered on his feast day, December 6, and he was never challenged.
  7. He also made certain that the children stayed on the right side of the law by encouraging them to pray and demonstrate good behavior.
  8. “That was an issue,” Bowler said.
  9. Bowler stated that, in many situations, the responsibility rested on the shoulders of infant Jesus, and the date was changed from December 6 to Christmas.

Consequently, the Christ child was frequently accompanied by a frightening companion to assist him with the carrying of gifts and intimidating of children, which did not seem suitable coming from the infant Jesus.” Some of these frightening Germanic creatures were modeled on Nicholas once more, this time as a dangerous sidekick rather than as a saint, like Ru-klaus (Rough Nicholas), Aschenklas (Ashy Nicholas), and Pelznickel (Pelznickel) were (Furry Nicholas).

This group of personalities either expected youngsters to behave well or subjected them to punishments such as whippings or kidnappings.

Despite their apparent dissimilarity to the cheerful guy in red, these vibrant figures would eventually play an important role in the formation of Santa himself. (This is related to: “What Is the Meaning of Krampus? The Horrific Christmas Devil is explained in detail “) ) ) ) ) ) ) )

Coming to America

In the Netherlands, children and families just refused to give up the tradition of St. Nicholas bringing gifts. They transported the tale of Sinterklaas with them to the New World colonies, where the legends of the hairy and terrifying Germanic gift bringers persisted as well. However, Christmas in early America was very different from the present celebration. In New England, the event was avoided, and in other parts of the country, it had taken on the appearance of the pagan Saturnalia that had formerly held the same spot on the calendar.

  • And there was no specific, mystical gift-giver who appeared.” Then, during the first decades of the nineteenth century, everything changed owing to a group of poets and authors who worked hard to make Christmas a family celebration—by renewing and rebuilding the figure of St.
  • Nickerbocker’s History of New York, written by Washington Irving in 1809, depicted a pipe-smoking Nicholas floating above the roofs in a flying wagon, giving presents to good girls and boys and switching presents with bad ones.
  • With this apparition, “Santa Claus” has made his public debut, according to Bowler.
  • Nicholas’ supernatural gift-giving, which has been stripped of all religious qualities.
  • Originally written for his six children, Clement Clarke Moore’s “A Visit From St.
  • Moore had no intention of contributing to the burgeoning Santa Claus myth.
  • “It went viral,” Bowler said of the video.
  • The photograph, which Bowler described as “absolutely the likeness of George Washington riding on a broomstick,” was taken by him.
  • Santa’s cheery, chubby, grandfatherly look was mostly conceived by Thomas Nast, the renowned political cartoonist of an era in which there were many of them.

According to Bowler, “He’s done an excellent job of taming these characters from the late medieval period that were like something out of a Grimm’s Fairy Tale.”

The Santa problem

Despite the fact that he obviously has the best of intentions, Santa has certainly sparked, and continues to spark, more than his fair share of controversy. In Russia, Santa Claus came into conflict with Joseph Stalin. Before the Russian Revolution, Grandfather Frost (Ded Moroz) was a popular Christmas figure who had taken on aspects of proto-Santas such as the Dutch Sinterklaas and adapted them to the Russian context. “When the Soviet Union was established, the communists prohibited the celebration of Christmas as well as the practice of gift giving,” Bowler explained.

Christmas was not replaced in Russia, and Soviet attempts to promote a secular version of Grandfather Frost, replete with a blue coat to avoid confusion with Santa, throughout Europe were eventually unsuccessful.

In the years immediately following World War II, American forces took their version of the cheerful guy across the world, and he was widely welcomed, according to Bowler, as a symbol of American generosity in reconstructing war-torn regions.

Santa is sometimes turned away because he is not a native speaker of the language.” Anti-Santa movements are quite strong in countries such as the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, Austria, and Latin America, all of which are attempting to retain their original Christmas gift givers and rituals while protecting them from the North American Santa “he explained.

The information in this story has been updated.

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