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Tribune Online
The many looks of Nigerian Father Xmas


Across the world, a common feature of the Christmas celebrations is the appearance of Santa Claus said to come from Rome or the North Pole annually, depending on who is narrating the story. Every child recognises Santa, who many call Father Christmas; are irrespective of the name, this plump, jolly man brings gifts every Christmas.

Though according to history, Santa Claus is different from Father Xmas, they both have the same characteristics of being the nice man that comes bearing gifts. Santa Claus, according to history, is a man known as St. Nicholas, who from artist’s impression does not look like the red-cheeked, white-bearded old man seen everywhere today. He was a Greek bishop born in the late third century, around 280 A.D who had the reputation of a fiery, wiry and defiant defender of Church doctrine during the Great Persecution in 303.

He went to prison for this and around 1200, he became known as a patron of children and magical gift bringer; he was said to take on some aspects of earlier European deities who appeared as white-bearded men and had magical powers like flight. He also ensured that kids toed the line by saying their prayers and practising good behaviour.

Father Christmas is our version of Santa Claus. He is an old jolly man with white hair, a beard and a moustache. He is dressed in a red suit outlined in white and his elves make all the toys for Christmas in his home in the North Pole.   In the earliest form, he was not the bringer of gifts for small children, nor did he come down the chimney but simply wandered around from home to home, feasting with them.

Every child recognises Father Xmas and expects to get gifts even when they grow up to know he is a human like everyone. But today, especially in African countries, Father Christmas appears in many forms; the good, the bad and the ugly, making the tradition lose its mystical value, even for children. But the reality today is that it seems that organisers of Father Christmas shows in Nigeria no longer pay attention to aesthetics and now create Father Christmas that deviates from the original version.

The many looks of Nigerian Father Xmas
Tribune Online

source https://tribuneonlineng.com/the-many-looks-of-nigerian-father-xmas/

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