Ok, Sinterklaas, is really the bishop of Smyrna, and the American Santaclaus is a completely different person! Sinterklaas is very dignified, and wears ecclastial robes. Santaclaus has a fat belly, goes ”Ho-ho-ho” all the time, and wears a kind of fur edged lumberjack outfit!
Sinterklaas lives in Spain, Santaclaus lives on the north pole.
Sinterklaas rides a white horse, Santaclause has a sledge with reindeer.
Sinterklaas has ”black Pete” Santaclaus has ”elves”
Santaclaus is really American, a kind of cross-over between the Dutch Saint Nicholas, and the English father christmas.
The english Father Cristmas
Ok, back to the one and only Saint Nicholas. So, Saint Nicholas used to rescue orphans and rescue girls from prostitution by giving them dowries so they could get married. (And what does that say about men huh???) And recently, a hundred and fifty years ago, it used to be customary for girls to put their shoes outside the front door, and in the night, any admirers they had would put poems and small gifts inside them, and sugar hearts.
The nineteenth century was also the time when lazy parents tried to up their pathetic parenting by scaring their children into submission by threatening them with a good whipping from the benevolent holy man!
Which brings us to Black Piet. Because nowadays, it is black Piet Who does the punishing, and really bad children are put into a large bag, and carried back to Spain to be punished there.
Few ever come back….
Black Piet is not an African, he is painted black. So even if somebody of African descent is black Piet, they still have to be painted black.
Black Pete is a sort of mix between the boogie-man and the devil. In this time the devils and demons are chained, and the devil is being made to serve the cause of Good.
I don’t know. As far as I know, all the black Piets live in Spain, together with Saint Nicholas, and they have quite a nice life there. You’d think all the children would be scared of black Piet, but they never are; they all love all black piets! It’s Sinterklaas himself that really scares some people.
I myself have been a Black Piet twice. It takes about a week for all traces of black paint to wear off.
Here you can see Sinterklaas in his study. He has a great book inwhich all the exploits of children are recorded, bad and good. But really, he is quite nice and friendly and I have never known anybody to be taken to Spain, even if they really deserved it!
Everybody can count on some presents every year. 🙂