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A gleefully dark and well-researched exploration of the history and customs of European Yuletide folklore. How did St Nicholas save children from cannibalism? Who were the Yule Lads and why would they steal your sausages? Why was the Alpine Father Christmas accompanied by a demonic figure called the Krampus who bundled children into sacks and dragged them off to Hell? AndA gleefully dark and well-researched exploration of the history and customs of European Yuletide folklore. How did St Nicholas save children from cannibalism? Who were the Yule Lads and why would they steal your sausages? Why was the Alpine Father Christmas accompanied by a demonic figure called the Krampus who bundled children into sacks and dragged them off to Hell? And why do Spanish nativity scenes often feature a defecating peasant?Over the course of the 20th Century, a universal image developed around the world of Santa Claus as a kindly Christmas visitor but, prior to that, each country, town and community would have Christmas visitors of their own - sometimes human, sometimes animal, sometimes something else entirely - with their own curious set of mythology and customs. The Finns were visited by a pagan goat named Joulupukki that was said to eat anyone who misbehaved. In Iceland, it was said that any child who did not receive an item of new clothing for Christmas would be caught and consumed by the monstrous Christmas Cat!Bad Santas celebrates some of the most imaginative, terrifying and outright curious Christmas figures from across Europe - looking closely at its legacy of disquieting fairy stories. With beautiful black and white line drawings in each chapter, this unusual, entertaining and gleefully dark exploration of seasonal folklore will make an ideal Christmas gift and the perfect book for reading around the fireside....

Title : Bad Santas: and other creepy Christmas characters
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781471129858
Format Type : ebook
Number of Pages : 272 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Bad Santas: and other creepy Christmas characters Reviews

  • Kylie
    2019-03-05 01:52

    An interesting read, but at times repetitive due to folklore overlapping in certain parts.

  • Rachael Eyre
    2019-03-26 01:08

    I'm trying to write a collection of macabre Christmas stories, so this was an invaluable resource. My favourite of Santa's hangers on (and the author's too, I suspect) has to be the demonic Krampus, but the other personalities deserve a closer acquaintance. What about idiosyncratic hoodlums the Yule Lads, the fearsome Christmas Cat (who will only let you go undevoured if you've received new clothes - you'll never moan about getting socks or a lumpy jumper again!) or Pere Fouettard, a former child murderer turned St Nicholas's grudging serf? If these guys are anything to go by, we Brits got off lightly in terms of Christmas terror!It also touches upon potty traditions, such as why Victorians apparently had a dead bird fetish, or why Spanish Nativities commonly feature a defecating peasant, and the less cosy facets of St Nick himself. A quick, funny, informative read, and definitely a source of inspiration!

  • Ceri
    2019-03-14 00:02

    Perhaps my favourite non-fiction book I've ever read! I've been into the "dark" side of Christmas since I was eight years old and first picked up one of Point Horror's "Mysterious Christmas Tales" anthologies and a fascination with folklore and religious history made this a must read for me. A lot of it was familiar territory- as I write this its Christmas Eve, my 4 year old daughter has just gone to bed leaving a mince pie and Port for Father Christmas and sweets for Krampus (we're British with a touch of German and a smidgen of weird) - but a lot was brand new to me and fascinating. For a book with SO much information crammed in, it was about as far from dry as it could possibly get- just the right amount of humour, because obviously, this is a fun topic and the stories vary from horrifying to ridiculous. Here's hoping I get some clothes tomorrow so I don't get eaten by the Christmas Cat!

  • April-Jane Rowan
    2019-03-09 01:11

    This book features not only my beloved Krampus but many other Festive creepers like The Yule Cat, Black Peter and Perchta. It was incredibly illuminating, charting the shifting visages of this festive period from terrified dark nights, rowdy violent parties to the twee celebrations that have held since the Victorian era. It also uncovers where Santa comes from and the answer will likely surprise many as it is not the answer that is widely told. I was particularly charmed by the Tio De Nadal, the pooping log that is beaten so sweets are pooped from inside it. Might have to get one of those cuties to keep by my own fire.

  • Edward Janes
    2019-03-13 04:07

    NYR2016 #49.I really enjoyed this non-fiction book of the different myths around Christmas around Europe and the wider world. It begins with the tales of rather dark figures from the Middle Ages and pagan times including the Krampus, Sinterklass and the Christmas Cat, when the colder winters and poverty could kill and the main aim was to keep children at home and well behaved. Through the Puritan crackdown on the season to the resurgence of Christmas and how we have merged towards a single figure with a red coat and white beard. No spoilers on which ones are real though...

  • Frances Kapherr
    2019-03-02 03:14

    The book was interesting enough, a good tour of Christmas characters. Whilst some areas of the book positively skipped along as light, witty & informative but others parts plodded & I felt I was being hit over the head with the fact I was meant to be absorbing. Sound but not amazing.