Thursday, December 1, 2011

The Night Before Christmas

Clement Clarke Moore (1779-1863), wrote the poem "The Night Before Christmas" also called "a visit from St. Nicholas" in 1822. It is now the tradition in many American families to read the poem every Christmas eve. The poem has redefined our image of Christmas and Santa Claus. Prior to the creation of the story of Twas the night before Christmas St. Nicholas the patron of children had never been associated with sleigh or reindeer's.

Clement Moore the author of the poem, The Night Before Christmas was a reticent man and it is believed that a family friend, Miss H. Butler sent a copy of the poem to the New York Sentinel, who published the poem. The condition of publication was that the author of The Night Before Christmas was to remain anonymous. The first publication date was December 26, 1823 and it was an immediate success.

It was not until 1844 that Clement Clarke Moore claimed ownership when the work was included in a book of his poetry. Clement Clarke Moore came from a prominent family and his father-Benjamin Moore was the Bishop of New York, who was famous for officiating at the inauguration of George Washington. The tradition of reading The Night Before Christmas on Christmas eve is now a world wide institution and tradition.

17 comments:

Abe Lincoln said...

For as long as I can remember, the poem has been one of my favorites.

welcome to my world of poetry said...

I well my grandmother reciting this when I was small. thanks for reminding me.
Also thanks for the visits and comments.

Yvonne.

Denise said...

A lovely bit of history behind the poem. Thank you Margaret, another very enjoyable read.

romance-of-roses said...

I love this poem and have read it to my grandchildren when they were small. Thanks for the history of it. Hugs...Lu

Babli said...

Wonderful, informative and quite interesting. I liked it as I gained knowledge.

Linda said...

Wow, Margaret, I had no idea that this is the story that set the standard for Santa and his sleigh, etc. That's neat!

Yes, Sarah and I used to always read the story on Christmas Eve, along with the scripture of Jesus's birth, and then years later, we added "The Polar Express" book to our repertoire which always made me cry at the end because it was the ending of childhood innocence that led to them not being able to hear Santa's bells anymore and I realized how soon that time was coming for Sarah. Now of course, she's just a week away from being 16. The time did fly all too fast.

Thanks for the interesting facts as always. Hope you and your husband have a good weekend.
Blessings,
Linda

Kay said...

This was so interesting, Margaret. I didn't know the history behind that well-loved poem.

Becky said...

Wow, I had never heard this. Thanks Margaret, so much knowledge you write about.
B.

shooting star said...

very interesting..though i come from a culture(or religion watever you can say!!) which does not have the concept of Christmas...there are lot of christians in our country(and city)..so we do get to join in with their celebrations!!

http://sushmita-smile.blogspot.com

KleinsteMotte said...

I enjoyed reading this to my grade school students and we always did traditions around the world. My first encounter of St. Nick came with the tradition of his visit to children in the night of Dec.6. In Germany Christmas Eve back in the 50's was just for the Christchild and gifts came for that reason. However now they too have put Santa Claus on the scene for that time but I'm not are how that works since gifts were opened on the 24th.

Lynn@ The Vintage Nest said...

thanks Margaret for all that info. on a poem we all know and love. I bought a book of "The Night Before Christmas" this year for my grand girls. They already have one but this particular book had the most fabulous illustrations. I thought it would make a great keepsake book. xoxo Lynn

Joseph Pulikotil said...

Hello Margaret,

Interesting information. I have not heard of this poem. I will google it and see.

Best wishes,
Joseph

Judy said...

Love this poem and all the different variations you sometime see of it. Great post. Hope you are doing well and you and your family have a wonderful holiday season. Love and hugs and Merry Christmas to you.

Arti said...

Did not know about that poem and its history. You have presented it in such a nice way.
Thanks for sharing, Have a fabulous sunday Margaret:)

Patty said...

Very interesting article. Yes, I've heard the story every since I was a small kid. Sunday and didn't know what to fix for supper, so it's meatloaf time, scalloped potatoes, and peas. Daughter won't get home until around 8, working her 12 hour shift, then she's off for three days. When her new classes start again in about two weeks, she'll be in class Mon through Fri and working Fri through Monday. Not sure how it's all going to work out, but the hospital is working out a schedule for her. Hope you and Wayne have been good. Tomorrow I take the car for an oil change, Tuesday, I go for therapy on the back and get my hair cut, Thursday is time for blood work for myself. Seems always something in the Winter. I guess i should quit complaining and be thankful I'm able to do these things. Take care. haven't been getting around to blogs like I use to.

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Hzndi said...

Kunjungan pertama kali, kenalan dulu ah :)

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