Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Chesterton on Santa Claus: New York Times Dec. 22, 1912

In this book review (which I've never seen before), Chesterton defends Santa, and concludes:
...the only test of whether he is genuine is whether he is recognized.
In this article, which comes up, I'm sorry to say, as a pdf and more like a picture file than a word file, Chesterton is reviewing a book by S.R. Littlewood, The Story of Santa Claus. Apparently, Chesterton has mainly disagreed with the author, and seeks to inform us of that fact.
The third point is more obvious, but even more neglected; here it need only be mentioned to correct what has gone before. It should always be remembered that dogmatic and authoristative religious spend much of their time rather in restraining superstitions than in encouraging them, and that such enthusiasms as that which Protestants call "Mariolatry" generally display all the merits and defects of widespread democratic movements. If saints, such as St. Nicholas of the Children, do not exist, they were not a priestly deception, but an erroneous public opinion.
I hope you can download this and use AdobeReader to read it all, because it's great.

H/T/: Deb L. and Bob C.


  1. I don't know that I've ever understood fairy tales in the sense Chesterton and Belloc have. Maybe our modern society is that out of touch with the mystical that I cannot grasp the importance of fairy tales. I can say that there are times when I feel like I'm living a fairy tale. My wife and I had trouble conceiving a child but on her birthday we found out she was pregnant. Maybe through faith we live the fairy tale.

  2. Dave,
    Thanks beautiful, thank you. And congratulations!

    I only know that if Richard Dawkins, atheist extraordinaire, is going to devote his next books on the pernicious evil of fairy tales, then defending fairy tales must be right.

    I think fairy stories are very important to children, but they can be useful illustrations for we adults who sometimes lose our way.

    Sometimes I think fairy tales are baby theology. And sometimes, I really am just a baby as far as theology. ;-)

  3. Thank you Nancy.

    I think Richard Dawkins is tinkering with insanity, for he is literally trying to kill Santa Claus.

    He's not aware that it wasn't science and logic that killed Zeus and Oden, and only one thing could.


Join our FaceBook fan page today!