Monday, June 12, 2006

Pagan Gods Renamed as Saints

All good Catholics are familiar with how St. Dionysos is venerated by ripping small mammals to bits. And how the saint day of St. Jupiter is celebrated by dressing up as waterfowl and domestic animals and then trying to get dates. St. Thor is the patron saint of blacksmiths, venerated by collecting His comic book. As for the reliquary of St. Hermes, don't even ask.

Of all the all the pagan borrowings, of course, Santa Claus is the most obvious. His celebrations involve hanging stuff from trees. He knows if you've been bad or good.

Just ask yourself, do you ever see Santa Claus and Odin together at the same time? Think about it.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Glad to see your blog. But aren't you guilty of a bit of false advertising? You say "medieval" but it looks like this is mainly about the 14th century! :)

I have a holiday food tray that has a white bearded character in a long red cloak trimmed with white fur and holding a staff topped with a gold and crystal star/sun. He is accompanied by some of the most muscular and threatening reindeer (if that's what they are) I can imagine.

I'm not sure that SC started out as Odin but the tray seems to indicate that he's moved pretty far in that direction.

He sure doesn't look much like a olive oil slathered Greek bishop.

Steve Muhlberger