Santa Claus, Saint Nicholas- the origins of Father Christmas

For those interested in the origins of Santa….read on!

I’m taking a little deviation from our ‘A-Z of inspiring women’ series, as it seems only fitting on Christmas Eve to give you the low-down on the man about to slide down your chimney. As you dust off your stockings and prepare milk and cookies for jolly red man, ponder on his journey to be one of the most recognised characters in the world.


Santa starts his many incarnations as Saint Nicholas- a 4th-century Greek bishop living in Byzantium (modern-day Turkey). He is credited with many miracles, hence his sainthood, but is remembered most for his generosity. Throughout his life he helped those downtrodden by life, giving away money and presents to those in need.


He died on December 6th, 343 AD, and traditionally his saint’s day is commemorated by gift-giving on that day.

The Dutch name for Saint Nick- ‘Sinter Klaas’ is the origin of our corruption to ‘Santa…

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