taxlady: (girly bits)
The Saami's of Northern Scandinavia and North Western Russia traditionally had a shamanistic religion. They celebrated the Winter Solstice. Many of the Saamis were nomadic reindeer herders. They had tents that looked like this:



They were open at the top, so smoke from the fire could get out. In winter, snow was often piled high around the tent for insulation. This meant that you had to get into and out of the tent through the chimney hole.

Here are couple of men in what traditional Saami Gákti looks like:



The cap is weird and has a pompom or "tails" hanging from the end. The upper garment is approximately hip length and has a contrasting belt. The trousers are tucked into the boots. One could describe Santa's outfit that way. You just have to dull down the colour scheme to only red and white.



At approximately the Winter Solstice, the shaman would visit the families and bring gifts. Of course, he would arrive by reindeer sleigh. So, way before the Samis were converted to Christianity, a guy in a funny outfit would show up at the Winter Solstice by reindeer sleigh and come in through the chimney with gifts. Kinda makes you wonder where we got our ideas about Santa Claus, doesn't it?

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