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Sinterklaas in historical context E-mail
On December 5 it is again. Then the children celebrate Sinterklaas. A children's where today is a stain on there. A stain that easily eliminated or prevented, as the stain-making aspect adjusted. This stain has to do with the person of Black Piet, as they later developed, but originally was not.

The person Sinterklaas
St. Nicolaos, as is his real name, was born around 270 AD in Asia Minor, probably in Patara belonging to the Eastern Roman Empire. And died in Myra on December 6, probably in the year 342 AD. He lived at the time of Emperor Constantine I the Great, who first tolerated Christianity. Nicolaos had a reputation as a benefactor. He was the savior of shipwrecked during a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. But he was also a benefactor of poor children and protector of married couples. (In the latter capacity he appears through the window 3 gold coins in the shoes of 3 poor girls have to cast). The only thing with absolute certainty is to say about this man that he was bishop of Myra in Asia Minor (Turkey).

The person Black Piet
Piet What comes is not known with certainty. The name of Piet is suspiciously like the same as the name of St. Peter (Pieter). St. Peter was the successor of Jesus, his right (St. Paul was left of Jesus shown). St Peter was put to death in Rome, where he served as the 1st Bishop goes for the Christians. St. Peter the Apostle recalls still. From the 2nd and 3rd century AD, there are known images of him: a big, robust man with a strong jaw line, a high forehead and thick dark curls and a beard, as he is depicted on a bronze medallion, now in the Vatican. Furthermore, it is from the 4th century, depicted with a club-like scepter in his hand (the ROE). St. Peter was also known as a mediator between life (white) and dead (black)! He was, for example at the gates of heaven and who decided it was or not. Piet as we have evolved from the Germanic black raven helpers of Wodan, the person of St. Peter, the chimney pages as Black Peter from the 16th century and the Moorish dark pages from the 17th and 18th century .. These pages were a mythical story of glued Piter the Ethiopir (to name state), after which he was free from continued service in gratitude of Saint Nicolaos.

Origin Santa Claus and Christmas:
Both have Christian Indo-European events to which both are in a period coinciding around the winter solstice. This is an important day in the Indo-European calendar, because below the days shorter. There is an oriental tradition (Persian-Indian Aryan) in Mitras worship on December 25 and there is a tradition in the Germanic god Wodan in the same time. These two traditions came together with the veneration of the saints St Nicolaos (December 6) Jesus (25 December) and St. Peter (December 28). In the person of St. Nicolaos (Greek Orthodox Church) and St. Peter (Roman church founder) were also the two Roman Christian traditions together.

Eastern tradition
Christmas is the celebration around Mitras, always in India coupled with Varuna: Varuna represents the period June 21 to December 21, Mitra and others. Mitra is called Aditya, son of mother Aditi. He was born in one simple place, a cave. The image of the Persians Mitra is transferred to the Roman Empire, where he is worshiped until his worship replaced by the celebration of Jesus birth.

Germanic tradition
The Germanic Wodan Elements diving soon with the German People's relocation from the 3rd century. In particular, the Visigoths in southern Europe appear to be a scourge the Romans. In December, the feast celebrated in honor of the bearded Wodan (Uranos-Varuna), which in horse heaven ruled, assisted by his 2 BLACK RAVEN, from the earth gave messages about the needs of the character developments. The Germans placed than offering gifts (packets) to holy fire took place (chimneys). Wodan had a spear in his hand with a hose to the top (staff) and wore an animal skin to his shoulders (mantle) and an animal head (cap).

Medieval-Christian tradition
Around 450 AD, there were churches in Asia Minor and Greece to him. In 800 AD, he was officially recognized as a saint of the Eastern Catholic Church. Initially, St. Nicolaos known in Greek-Orthodox circles. From Asia Minor came Nicholas Celebration into Russia and then in Scandinavia and Lapland. Saint Nicholas' remains were Italian worshipers in 1087 moved to Bari, which was part of the Spanish empire. From this period affects the Sinterklaas celebration widespread in south-west and from here in north western Europe. And in the 13th century was celebrated December 6th as Bishop St.Nicolaasdag in France. The Sinterklaas was there from the 13th century and especially by children. There is no mention of Black Peter. Children receive presents and food and a children's elected bishop and his secondanten that extra pampered be. (An account from 1360 in Dordrecht) St. Nicolaosdag was celebrated on December 6, but the children's festivities lasted from December 6 to December 28 (Innocents children). Both days 2 Christian saints to: December 6, the sterftedag St Nicolaos and 28 December, according to the Syrian martyrologium the day of St. Peter (and St. Paul). It was more a kind of Santa Claus Santa Claus, as he is still honored in his birthplace Myra (now Demre) and Noel baba called dad Nicolaos. By the end of the 15th century St Nicholas next to Jesus and Mary's most beloved religious person. There were more than 2,000 chapels and monasteries named after him.

For many pagan festivals road to press the church has a lot of trouble to those days away, but the holidays were so strong that traditionally anchored finally decided to hold these days, but gradually replaced by Christian holy figures.

Later Christian tradition
By conquering the New World, Spain is a superpower. The Inquisition Period is loud. Slavery and persecution. The Sinterklaas celebration disappears from Catholic countries. Only keep in the Low Countries.

In the 16th century, the pages or service servants clothes as we now know of the Piet.

In this period created the myth Piets as black as soot, from the chimney. Knecht Ruprecht is known as Zwarte Piet, as he presents through the chimney and is therefore black. It seems, however, that the role of Zwarte Piet in the 17th and 18th century was met by Moorish servants or service pages, which were very popular. That period coincides with the time slaves, the risk of discriminatory aspects likely.

Low Countries:
In the 16th century the Low Countries under the administration of the Spanish kroon.Misschien that Piet and the Saint, as we now know at this time stronger traditions werden.Vanaf the 17th century, the Dutch Sinterklaas celebration into the New World, to their colony of New Amsterdam (New York). Here is the party known as Santa Claus, but around Christmas. It is likely that the influence of the Scandinavian Christmas Wodan has had a role and the aspect of the Finnish reindeer YulePukka (Old Bok?) Santa Claus.

NB At a given moment, the night before an important holiday also celebrated as Christmas Eve. Hence Sinterklaas in the Netherlands shifted from 6 to December 5. But in Belgium is still celebrated on December 6.

I think Santa Claus should be celebrated as children's. The image of Zwarte Piet is controversial, but this can easily be solved by Piet get rid of Moorish elements. It would be a shame for a children's stay with discriminatory elements of the slave period, which was not originally inzaten.


Sources include: Encyclopaedia Catholica

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