Who Brings Gifts to Europe?

Redditor rappzula created a map that shows all the different names used for Santa Claus and related holiday gift-bringers in Europe. The midwinter custom of anonymous gifts from a magical figure was in place in Europe long before Christianity. the figure of St. Nicholas was added later. Meanwhile, the magical figure can be an old man, the Christ child, a woman, a goat, or even a log. Some bring gifts at Christmas, others at St. Nicholas Day, the New Year, or some other day. In some countries, one figure comes at St. Nicholas Day and another at Christmas! But they all know if you've been naughty or nice. Click to enlarge the full-size map here. -via Buzzfeed 


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Badly researched in several places. The Dutch and Belgian inaccuracies concerning Sinterklass and Christmas have already been noted. I'll speak on behalf of central European inaccuracies : Austrians, Czechs, Slovaks and Hungarians celebrated both Saint Nicholas (on the 6th of December) and Christmas on the 24th-26th. Gifts are given during both holidays, though the bigger and main ones are at Christmas Eve, on the 24th. Saint Nicholas (St. Nick, Nikolaus, Mikuláš, Mikulás) brings gifts on the 6th December, while the Baby Jesus (Christ Child) brings gifts on Christmas Eve. This counts for all four of these countries, so the erroneous entry for Slovakia just comes across as bizarre and lazily researched. I urge the author of the image to update it and fix the issues. If he/she wants the image to be really informative, then the information contained within should be accurate. Thanks for hearing me out and a Merry Christmas (or whatever holiday you might be celebrating) to all ! :-)
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Same for part of Switzerland. Your mistake with our country is trying to simply separate it in two entities following Germany and France: it does not work like that! Between the enclaves, the three different zones of influence from the neighbor countries, the exceptions, ...
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The Dutch and Belgians mostly get their holiday presents from Sinterklaas or Sint Nicolaas, on 5 and 6 December respectively. The Kerstman (Santa Claus/Father Christmas) is less popular than — what we believe is the proper way to celebrate St. Nicholas — although allegedly Mr. Coca-Cola is gaining in popularity.
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