Monday, January 09, 2006


HO! HO! HO! Whaddya Know? It wasn’t Santa, but Mother Goddess Holda who used to swoop down our chimneys, leaving all those goodies, and nibbling on our cookies!
“…[I]n some parts of old Europe, it was Holda--not Santa--who brought gifts to children and determined who was 'naughty or nice.' I also encountered lore depicting her as dressed in red and going down chimneys to bring gifts to children. An old Germanic tradition included leaving an offering of food and milk for Holda on December 24, known as Mother Night.”

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thnx to BeliefNet for the foto


ursa said...

Wonderful info, she is definitely bringing my presents next year. It brings up mother goose again winging across the night in her goose feather shawl

I think there maybe other santa goddesses out there two

Arthur said...

Interesting, I would be interested in kowing your sources for this information.

Morgaine said...

Arthur - she gave you the link. Click on 'more' to take you to the original article.

Athana - I was thinking about Holda this year. I'm thinking of ways to write her back into the Yuletide story.

Anti_thesisofreason said...

I called on Dame Holda to bless us at my Yule gathering this past holiday.

Judith said...

I've suspected something like this for a long time. Else why would the Italian feminine form of the noun--Santa--be used. (If "Santa" were a man, he should be called "Sant" or "Santo", right?)

ursa said...

That is interesting judith I have found references to La Befana an Italian witch who fly's across the sky on Epiphany night bearing gifts for children which she slides down chimneys to deliver, stockings are left out for her.
She seems to date back to a Sabine goddess of the new year called Strenia or Strenua.
There was a temple discovered in Britain recently dedicated to an unknown goddess called Senua I wonder if there's a link.