Santa Claus: More Confusion Over Names
By the time the next major contributor to the gift bringer’s mythology came upon the scene, the St. Nicholas figure popularized by Moore and Irving had become known as Santa Claus. The Dutch phrase for St. Nicholas is Sinterklaas. Apparently, American English speakers found this word troublesome. Scholars have uncovered a number of early American renditions of the good saint’s name, including “St. Aclaus,” “St. Iclaus,” “Santeclaw,” “Sancte Klaas,” “St. Claas,” and “St. a claus.” Eventually, Americans settled on “Santa Claus,” a name which, for most English speakers, obscured the gift giver’s link back to one of Europe’s most popular saints.