Thursday, December 4, 2008

Saint Nicolas

Saint Nicolas' day is December 6 but he's been around for at least a week and he'll stay for another week or so... Saint Nicolas gives presents to good children but he is accompanied by the Père Fouettard (Whipping Father), who dispenses lumps of coal or even whippings to bad children. He's black either because of the coal or because he goes down chimneys.


What exactly are the Père Fouettard and the old lady doing to Saint Nicolas?



Saretta said...

Are they bowing down to him? Saint Nicholas is very famous here in the Apulia region of Italy. We have his bones in the cathedral in Bari.

humanobserver said...

A great costume......

Tash said...

St. Nick used to leave oranges and chocolates in a real stocking on the bed when I was little in Yugoslavia. He was a mysterious figure different from Santa Claus (or Deda Mraz).
We lived in Catholic section of Switzerland (by Luzern) for 1 & 1/2 years and there they had St. Nickolas arrive with cow bells ringing and Schmutzli went with St. Nick to homes and was the one who looked for "bad" kids. Wonderful photos showing the way it is there.