Saint Nicholas

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Nicholas, Saint,

patron of children and sailors, of Greece, Sicily, and Russia, and of many other places and persons. Little is known of him, but he is traditionally identified as a 4th-century bishop of Myra in Asia Minor. His relics were stolen from Myra in the Middle Ages and taken to Bari, Italy. St. Nicholas is the subject of many legends. He is credited with restoring to life three boys who had been chopped up and pickled in salt by a butcher. Another famous story concerns his giving three bags of gold to the daughters of a poor man and thus saving them from lives of prostitution. Later tradition transformed the bags into three gold balls, which became the symbol of pawnbrokers. In the Netherlands and elsewhere St. Nicholas's feast (Dec. 6) is a children's holiday, appropriate for gifts. The English in colonial New York adopted from the Dutch the now unrecognizable saint, calling him Santa Claus (a contraction of the Dutch Sint Nikolaas). They moved his feast day to the English gift holiday, Christmas. The career and qualities attributed to Santa Claus are all recently acquired.

Bibliography

See biography by C. W. Jones (1978, repr. 1988).

References in periodicals archive ?
It took him more than a week to complete St Nicholas, as the snow was slightly dry and powdery and it took longer than usual.
Sheelagh Bennett, the current churchwarden of St Nicholas, said: "Gloria was known by many and was one of the stalwarts of our church family at St Nicholas and the North Coventry diocese for many years and was very well known in the local Radford community.
3 St Nicholas - or Nicholas of Myra (in Turkey) - was a fourth century Christian saint whose reputation for secret gift-giving is celebrated on his feast day, December 6.
possible, access will be maintained via St Nicholas Place but this may be restricted between 9am to 4pm.
They tweeted: "After a lengthy surgery to fuse the pastern St Nicholas Abbey is recuperating in intensive care at John Halley's Fethard Equine Hospital.
Following the news of 7-4 favourite St Nicholas Abbey's injury, Cirrus Des Aigles was slashed to 11-8 market leader (from 5-2) for the King George with Ladbrokes, ahead of 4-1 second favourite Novellist and Irish Derby hero Trading Leather (9-2).
Meanwhile, Johnny Murtagh has been confirmed as the rider of Novellist in Saturday's King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot, but news of the booking was overshadowed after leading fancy St Nicholas Abbey sustained a career-ending injury.
According to Christian orthodox mythology, St Nicholas is roaming the seas and helping ships that might be in trouble.
But it was the 18-year-old's success on St Nicholas Abbey in the Turf at Churchill Downs that gave the proud father the most satisfaction.
He was bailed and, about a week later, police were called to St Nicholas Place in Kings Norton, a community hall owned by St Nicholas Church.
And speaking from his 60-acre stud in Gloucestershire, the 67-year-old said: "People love to hype a horse like St Nicholas Abbey up and then crucify him when they think he has flopped.
Murtagh is spoilt for choice in the premier Classic with O'Brien responsible for the first four in the betting - St Nicholas Abbey, Jan Vermeer, Midas Touch and Cape Blanco.