Sinterklaas (Saint Nicholas) has grown into a traditional holiday that is celebrated all over the Netherlands by both young and old. Originally, it is a children’s holiday. Saint Nicholas' Eve, the day when presents are handed out and that precedes the anniversary of Holy Saint Nicholas of Myra's death, has been celebrated differently over the past centuries.
While the origin of Saint Nicholas himself dates back to the third century, people have been able to find Dutch sources about Sinterklaas festivities from as early as the 15th century. In this century, people appeared to already place their shoe underneath the chimney on 5 December. At the time, rich people from Utrecht would place something in shoes at Saint Nicholas church in Utrecht and the items were divided among the poor on 6 December. This has become clear from materials from the archives. In the 17th century, Jan Steen also captured the morning of Sinterklaas festivities on two paintings. Children received toys and sweets, such as speculaas (short crust biscuit), pepernoten (spiced biscuits) and borstplaat (tablet). The modern variation of the Saint Nicholas holiday has most likely been derived from the book Sint Nicolaas en zijn knecht (Saint Nicholas and his Servant) (1850) by teacher Jan Schenkman (1806-1863).
Classic Sinterklaas Gifts
These days, the entire country celebrates the arrival of Sinterklaas and his Pieten (Petes) in the Netherlands on 16 November. Everybody looks forward to 5 December, because they can celebrate Saint Nicholas' Eve. Children receive toys and sweets and adults make a ‘surprise’ with a poem for each other. It is a celebration for old and young people. This is why Saint Nick can also purchase at Antique Style Web Store when it comes to gifts. Antique jewellery, classic sculptures, decorative scatter cushions and other home furnishings are beloved gifts and they can easily be ordered online at Antique Style Web Store. Purchase large gifts or ‘shoe’ gifts online in an easy and safe way.