Lucy Claus of Italy and The Christmas Cookies: The Secret History of Mrs. Claus, Part II

Lucy Claus.

The story of how a Bishop from Turkey became Saint Nicholas and then was forged by mythology into Santa Claus is well-known.

Saint Nick, the first Santa Claus.

Saint Nick, the first Santa Claus.

From this earliest of times, in approximately the year 300 A.D. he began the work for which Santa Claus through all the succeeding centuries would become legendary.

When he learned that the father of three daughters had not the money to provide a dowry for each of them, for example, he tossed his own gold coins into their home, where they fell into three of the girls’ wet stockings which were drying at the chimney.

And, the legend of the stockings and the chimney began.

Yet one fact escaped the official records.

At the time of his imprisonment, he discovered that another good person was being held prison in the cell across from him, in her case for refusing to marry a greedy and spiritless man, the pagan Paschiasius.

Nobody in the prisons could fail to notice her.

Adopting green and red as her trademark colors, Lucy Claus also had the ability to see places and people others could not.

Cloaking her head and shoulders and falling to the floor was a vibrant, glowing red cape over a green gown, or a green cape over a red gown.

Her name was Lucia, and she was born in 283 A.D. and lived in Sicily.  The world came to know her as Saint Lucy or Santa Lucia.

Few, however, realized that she went on to become the first Mrs. Claus, known as Lucy Claus.

Lucy had first aroused the suspicions of Roman soldiers by the fact that she often distributed not just bread to the poorest children wherever she went, but also something sweet to nibble on.

Bringing peace through her random acts of kindness, young Lucy circulated among the not-yet-warring children of tribes which whom she encamped in what is today’s Middle East, Asia, Africa and Europe.

She captured their immediate attention by handing out small shapes of sweetened breads, often brimming with fruit and nuts, always welcome by children and always entirely eaten. At first, these were very small versions of a fruited sweet bread from her native Sicily known as panetone, but soon

Panettone cake of Lucy Claus.

In fact, Lucy kept track of different tribes by giving the children of each a distinctly different type of biscuit or cookie.

In what would later come to be designated as Sweden, for example, she is still honored by descendants of those children who forever recalled the sweetened buttery treats with raisins which she gave them and which they then began to give to their own parents on Christmas Eve in an act of kindness and respect, mimicking the kindness of Lucy.

Lucykatt of Sweden.

As the generations went on, she was still so closely associated with the unique cookie that they were eventually, named Lucykatt in her honor.  At Christmas and other winter festivals throughout the world, all children now enjoy what are holiday cookies, because of Lucy Claus.

Lucy Claus was the first Mrs. Claus.

There was so much bitterness in the lives of so adults that even the little food for which they had to fight and which they often hoarded even when it became rancid and terrible to the taste.

It was only natural for the younger generations to follow the example of their elder.

Lucy’s generosity and her cookies, however, showed the youngest generations that there was another way to live with others – to share what they had and that to do so brought a sense of sweetness to existence.

During their imprisonment in the same prison, St. Lucy made a vow with St. Nicholas to join their efforts to change the world through acts of unexpected kindness, and anonymous generosity.

His feast day is celebrated December 6.

One week later, on December 13, Lucy’s feast day is celebrated at the time of year when darkness falls longest, the winter solstice.

It was to this dark day that Lucy Claus brought light not merely by candles to illuminate visual sight, but with the warmth of her generosity to enlighten hearts and minds and to provide a glowing vision of the whole world’s people.

While she was imprisoned, Lucy was blinded, but a new sense of sight was restored to her eyes; it was not what it had been, however.

The legend of Lucy Claus has her perched above all, able to see where the greatest help is needed around the world.

Instead, she came to “see” everyone without regard to the wrinkles or smoothness of age in a face, the color of hair or skin, the exposure to, or the protection from the elements.

And that is what made this very first Mrs. Claus learn to recognize people by whether they’d been naughty or nice. This skill was almost certainly first learned by St. Nick, aka “Santa Claus” from Lucy Claus.

Nobody is certain of how it was that Lucy Claus finally left prison.

Some claim she was sacrificed, made an example by her cruel keepers to show others what would happen if they dared to follow their natural impulse of sharing generously, as Lucy tried to show them they could.

The scarlet dress last worn by Lucy Claus?

Yet others say, the moment she was led into the prison yard, she was overcome by light she could not see but “felt” from those who believed in her message and were watching from outside the gates.

They say this light overcame, wrapped and lifted her away to a mysterious “perch” from which she could eternally see the people on earth with her unique way of seeing, and identity by either the brightness or dimness of their light who among them were most in need of shared generosity.

All that was left on earth of Lucy Claus was her bright red dress.


Categories: Fiction, Secret History of Mrs. Claus

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4 replies »

  1. There is an old Sicilian tradition around St. Lucy that I learned from my grandmother. From the Feast of St. Lucy on December 13 until Christmas Eve is 12 days. These are the “Twelve Days of Christmas,” ending the night that Christ was born.

    The wives tale, however, goes on to say that if you monitor the weather on each of those twelve days, you can get a rough forecast of the weather in each of the coming 12 months. In other words, if the 13th is cool but fair, you can expect January to be so. If the 14th is wet but warm, you can expect rains but above average temps for February, and on all the way until the 24th, which represents December.

    I have no knowledge of where it came fromor its accuracy, other than passed down for generations from Sicily, but I do know that my grandmother faithfully tracked this each year. And by God, whenever she pointed it out, the forecasts were right on target. Of course, she never pointed out the times the predication was way off!

    Happy Christmas Carl!

  2. I love your stories… am addicted.

    Where did you find the red dress? Do you have a larger or higher rez version? I would love to see it better. One of my hobbies is reproducing period clothing and that dress interests me.

    Thanks, Carl.

    • Wildegurl – thank you! no idea how much I appreciate the good word from you. Let me see if I can find a higher resolution on that picture – I might have to contact the North Pole Museum of History and Fine Arts. Although I hear they are understaffed this time of year.


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