A Conversation for Not a Christmas Prelude
Sinterklaas & Santa Claus are basically the same
Antares Started conversation Dec 10, 2001
In addition to your writings:
The figure of Santa Claus in mainly derived from Sinterklaas (Or Sint Nicolaas if you wish). Sinterklaas has traditionally been celebrated mainly by the people in the Netherlands and Belgium. Don't ask me why, I really don't know...
Anyway, during the period of the European 'invasion' of the the New World, many Dutch people emigrated to what was then called New Amsterdam. Later in history, New Amsterdam was traded with the English for the South American colony of Surinam, and became known as New York. Hey, we got our hands on some nice aluminium and some slaves, the English got to have their language spoken all over the world... But back to the original point. As the Dutch went to New Amsterdam, so did Sinterklaas. Just a little bit later than 5 december, because his steamboat wouldn't get him there fast enough. So he arrived around Christmas. Together with the English Father Christmas, and some Scandinavian traditions, he gradually transformed into Santa Claus. But untill the 1930's, having Santa Claus come over from the North Pole wasn't a wide spread practice.
Then a certain soft drink producer became unhappy with the fact that it's soft drink was mainly considered a 'summer' drink. They wanted to sell it in the winter too. So they hired a guy to make a nice add for them, to have their drink sold in all seasons, especially the winter. This guy immediately thougt of Santa Claus (who still looked a lot like Sinterklaas back then), and made him a bit more friendly looking. Actually, he modeled him more or less like his friendly neighbour, who was kind of chubby, had a short beard and a red nose...
So thanks to Coca Cola, half the world is now giving eachother expensive gifts for Christmas.
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