Advent/ St Nicholas’ Day (6th December)   1 comment

Nederlands: Sinterklaas tijdens het Het Feest ...

Nederlands: Sinterklaas tijdens het Het Feest van Sinterklaas (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Advent means ‘coming’ or ‘happening’, and it brings a stirring of excitement with the promise of Christmas. Within the season comes the feast of St. Nicholas, the patron saint of Russia and the special protector of children, scholars, merchants and sailors. The legend of his secret gifts to the three daughters of a poor citizen was the origin of the old custom of giving ‘secret Santa’ gifts on the eve of the day, 6th December. The early Dutch settlers took the tradition to North America, where it was transferred to 24th December, San Nicolaas becoming Santa Claus

The original St Nicholas probably lived in the early 4th Century in Asia Minor, where he was Bishop of Myra. He was imprisoned and tortured under the Roman Emperor Diocletian, but then released by Constantine. There is another legend about him restoring three murdered children to life. Until abolished under Elizabeth I, churches and cathedrals in England appointed a boy-bishop, who was allowed to preach, other boys taking over other priestly offices and processing around the town, as they do in Canterbury today.

One response to “Advent/ St Nicholas’ Day (6th December)

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  1. Reblogged this on hungarywolf.

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