There seems to be an increasing amount of evidence that the original Santa Claus was Chinese. His beard may be a different colour nowadays, but it's said that Lord Shang Ke who gave bribes to the naughty, and punishments to the good, could have been the inspiration for the Father Christmas we all know. "Shang Ke Lord" may even be where we get the name "Santa Claus" (according to the China Daily Show website, anyway).
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