“Where did Santa Claus come from?”

In modern times, the image of St. Nicholas has become a permanent element of pop culture. It is hard to imagine the winter months without the image of a sympathetic bearded man in a red suit. Although St. Nicholas is usually depicted in a snowy landscape, he actually came from much warmer regions.

Where did St. Nicholas come from?

The now-known image of St. Nicholas is based on Nicholas of Myra. The Catholic and Orthodox saint lived in the late third and early fourth century. He was born in Patara, which is now located in Turkey. Interestingly, most hagiographies about the bishop of Myra appeared about 200 years after his death, which has resulted in disputes among historians.

Some people question the very existence of St. Nicholas, while others believe that the legends about him are a combination of the lives of two different saints.

Who was Saint Nicholas?

According to legends, Nicholas was a bishop with an incredibly kind heart. There are stories of the saint saving innocent prisoners and giving money to the poor. The memory of St. Nicholas is celebrated on the day of his death, which is December 6th.

So where did the modern image of an older bearded man in a red suit come from? The inspiration for the color of his clothing was likely the characteristic bishop’s robes. Fred Mizen is responsible for the rest. The American artist came up with the well-known image of St. Nicholas in the 1930s for a Coca-Cola advertisement. The new version of the saint quickly became popular among people and became an integral part of popular culture.

The Americans were also responsible for placing St. Nicholas’ residence in Alaska. North Pole is a town located in the heart of Alaska. The town is visited by crowds of tourists every year.

Have you ever heard that St. Nicholas comes from Lapland? This legend was started by a Finnish radio journalist who said in a children’s program that Lapland is the birthplace of the famous saint. The story became so popular that it was necessary to create Santa Claus Village, which is located on the outskirts of Rovaniemi.



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