A generous grandfather with a sleigh pulled by 7 reindeer
Idle computer experts have calculated the timing of Santa Claus. This cute grandfather with a white beard and wearing a distinctive red fur coat is supposed to move at a speed of 1,500 kilometers per second harnessing reindeer and with a sun-neck through the chimneys of houses. In each house, he would spend 0.000001 seconds carrying a large bag on his back with several tons of gifts intended for the children. This data somehow undermines the trust of adults in the existence of Santa Claus.
There is an inextricable ball of legends surrounding this global legend and an uncountable number of those who are like his grandfather. That’s why ethnologists all over the world often use the words “probably” when they try to grasp the threads of all the beliefs contained in the story (starting with Roman pagan customs, the story of St. Nicholas and Santa Claus, and the capitalist-communist variants, that is, the American-Russian variants of the legend) about the origin of Santa Claus.
The legend of Santa Claus is not related to the snowy climate, because Argentinians jokingly call him “Hot Santa” (because Christmas and New Year’s holidays are in warm summer days). Then the grandfathers sweat from the heat without changing their heavy boots for light sandals or robes with T-shirts. Such is the custom after all.
Santa Claus (with a red costume and a snow-white beard) is an expression of the late American propaganda of Coca-Cola products based on the archaic cults of the European continent. It is otherwise considered that the grandfather is of Russian-Finnish origin, with the fact that the cult of the grandfather eventually merged with Saint Nicholas and Santa Claus. The institution of giving gifts during Christmas has its roots in ancient rituals related to the celebration of Saturnalia from December 17 to 25. At that time, loved ones gave themselves flowers and clay dolls. The institution of giving gifts with the adoption of Christianity is attributed to the figure of St. Nicholas (who lived in the 4th century).
During the reign of Emperor Justinius, the cult of Saint Nicholas spread to the east and west
In Europe, there was a set of customs during the Winter Solstice and the New Year (for the birth of a new young sun and the renewal of nature), when the celebration of Christmas was officially introduced in Rome in 336. This is where the custom of decorating the Christmas tree originates (in Old Rome it was a Christmas tree, among the Germans and Slavs it was an oak tree), with the fact that during the Christianization, firs were introduced.
Fir originally came from Scandinavian areas and from Dutch Protestants. The story of a benevolent wizard who arrives from the North Pole on a sledge with 7 reindeer and distributes gifts – became commercialized only at the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century. The custom was originally accepted by the Germans and then by other nations associating Santa Claus or Saint Klaus with a set of family holidays and not only for Saint Klaus Day. This is certainly for practical reasons, because all 3 holidays (Saint Klaus, Christmas and New Year) are arranged in short time intervals. For many Roman Catholics, however, these are separate holidays and separate personalities. For Saint Klaus, that saint arrives, and for Christmas the one whom the Italians call “Babo Natale”, the French “Pierre Noelle” and the English “Father Christmas”.
One interpretation says that the American professor and writer Clement Clark Moore is the creator of the modern legend of Santa Claus.
In the 20s of the 19th century, Moore created his character in the story – which was appealing to children’s imaginations but also to resourceful merchants who understood him as a commercial cult. A certain Thomas Nast and Morise von Sweede illustrated a book in which Santa Claus was given a red cloak that still relevant today.
Another interpretation says that this New Year’s symbol arrived with the Russians, that is, with socialism and communism. The communists wanted Saint Klaus and Santa Claus to be pushed under the carpet, replacing them with a faceless Santa Claus.
The Nordic countries have been arguing for the last few decades about the origin of the lovable grandfather. Finland makes a convincing argument that reindeer (pulling sleds) exist only in the northern parts of Finland (Laponia). Moreover, in 1979, the Finnish parliament declared Lapland the homeland of Santa Claus. Thus, the village next to the capital Rovaniemi became a tourist children’s village. Wooden houses, small churches, ice castles and fairy-tale lighting and decorations were built.
Grandpa’s twin brother lives in Greenland (a large island covered mostly by snow and ice).
There is a snow castle in the town of Nuuk near the Arctic Circle. There, the grandfather with many assistants opens the letters received from children from all over the world.
Tomte’s third brother lives in Sweden. He lives in the winding street of Tomteland (or Santaworld), a fairy-tale place northwest of Stockholm. Legend has it that Tomte had a bad dream many years ago. The children were afraid of him, thinking he was dangerous. The only way to drive away the children’s fear was to build a nice house where all the children would come and make sure that Tomte is harmless and noble. That’s how the idea for Tomteland was born, where this good giant works all year round in a toy factory for children who write letters.
Most children would probably agree that Santa is still a Lapland who brings toys and sweets even though he has the bad luck to always forget something important.