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Mrs. Claus (8080 views - Day Of)

Mrs. Claus is the wife of Santa Claus, the Christmas gift-bringer in American and European Christmas tradition. She is also known as Mother Christmas in parts of the UK, as a counterpart to Father Christmas. She is known for making cookies with the elves, caring for the reindeer, and preparing toys with her husband.
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Mrs. Claus

Mrs. Claus

Mrs. Claus

Mrs. Claus is the wife of Santa Claus, the Christmas gift-bringer in American and European Christmas tradition. She is also known as Mother Christmas[1] [2] in parts of the UK, as a counterpart to Father Christmas. She is known for making cookies with the elves, caring for the reindeer, and preparing toys with her husband.


The wife of Santa Claus is first mentioned in the short story "A Christmas Legend" (1849), by James Rees, a Philadelphia-based Christian missionary.[3] In the story, an old man and woman, both carrying a bundle on the back, are given shelter in a home on Christmas Eve as weary travelers. The next morning, the children of the house find an abundance of gifts for them, and the couple is revealed to be not "old Santa Claus and his wife", but the hosts' long-lost elder daughter and her husband in disguise.

Mrs. Santa Claus is mentioned by name in the pages of the Yale Literary Magazine in 1851, where the student author (whose name is given only as "A. B.") writes of the appearance of Santa Claus at a Christmas party:

[I]n bounded that jolly, fat and funny old elf, Santa Claus. His array was indescribably fantastic. He seemed to have done his best; and we should think, had Mrs. Santa Claus to help him.[4]

An account of a Christmas musicale at the State Lunatic Asylum in Utica, New York in 1854 included an appearance by Mrs. Santa Claus, with baby in arms, who danced to a holiday song.[5]

A passing references to Mrs. Santa Claus was made in an essay in Harper's Magazine in 1862;[6] and in the comic novel The Metropolites (1864) by Robert St. Clar, she appears in a woman's dream, wearing "Hessian high boots, a dozen of short, red petticoats, an old, large, straw bonnet" and bringing the woman a wide selection of finery to wear.[7]

A woman who may or may not be Mrs. Santa Claus appeared in the children's book Lill in Santa Claus Land and Other Stories by Ellis Towne, Sophie May and Ella Farman, published in Boston in 1878. In the story, little Lill describes her imaginary visit to Santa's office (not in the Arctic, incidentally):

"There was a lady sitting by a golden desk, writing in a large book, and Santa Claus was looking through a great telescope, and every once in a while he stopped and put his ear to a large speaking-tube.
"Presently he said to the lady, ‘Put down a good mark for Sarah Buttermilk. I see she is trying to conquer her quick temper.’
“‘Two bad ones for Isaac Clappertongue; he’ll drive his mother to the insane asylum yet.’"

Later, Lill's sister Effie ponders the tale:

Effie sank back in the chair to think. She wished Lill had found out how many black marks she had, and whether that lady was Mrs. Santa Claus—and had, in fact, obtained more accurate information about many things.

Much as in The Metropolites, Mrs. Santa Claus appears in a dream of the author E. C. Gardner in his article "A Hickory Back-Log" in Good Housekeeping magazine (1887), with an even more detailed description of her dress:

She was dressed for traveling and for cold weather. Her hood was large and round and red but not smooth, — it was corrugated; that is to say, it consisted of a series of rolls nearly as large as my arm, passing over her head sidewise, growing smaller toward the back until they terminated in a big button that was embellished with a knot of green ribbon. Its general appearance was not unlike that of the familiar, pictorial beehive except that the rolls were not arranged spirally. The broad, white ruffle of her lace cap projected several inches beyond the front of the hood and waved back and forth like the single leaves of a great white poppy, as she nodded emphatically in her discourse.
Her outer garment was a bright colored plaid worsted cloak reaching to within about six inches of the floor. Its size was most voluminous, but its fashion was extremely simple. It had a wide yoke across the shoulders, into which the broad plain breadths were gathered; and it was fastened at the throat by a huge ornamented brass hook and eye, from which hung a short chain of round twisted links. Her right arm protruded through a vertical slit at the side of the cloak and she held in her hand a sheet of paper covered with figures. The left arm on which she carried a large basket or bag — I couldn't tell which — was hidden by the ample folds of the garment. Her countenance was keen and nervous, but benignant.

Mrs. Claus proceeds to instruct the architect Gardner on the ideal modern kitchen, a plan of which he includes in the article.[8]

Santa Claus' wife made her most active appearance yet by Katharine Lee Bates in her poem "Goody Santa Claus on a Sleigh Ride" (1889).[9] "Goody" is short for "Goodwife", i.e., "Mrs."[10]

In Bates' poem, Mrs. Claus wheedles a Christmas Eve sleigh-ride from a reluctant Santa in recompense for tending their toy and bonbon laden Christmas trees, their Thanksgiving turkeys, and their "rainbow chickens" that lay Easter eggs. Once away, Mrs. Claus steadies the reindeer while Santa goes about his work descending chimneys to deliver gifts. She begs Santa to permit her to descend a chimney. Santa grudingly grants her request and she descends a chimney to mend a poor child's tattered stocking and to fill it with gifts. Once the task is completed, the Clauses return to their Arctic home. At the end of the poem, Mrs. Claus remarks that she is the "gladdest of the glad" because she has had her "own sweet will".

In popular media

Since 1889, Mrs. Claus has been generally depicted in media as a fairly heavy-set, kindly, white-haired elderly female baking cookies somewhere in the background of the Santa Claus mythos. She sometimes assists in toy production, and oversees Santa's elves. It is worth noting that, when not portrayed as white-haired or elderly, she is often shown to have red hair. This could be because red hair is the color that most commonly fades to white with age.[citation needed] She is usually depicted wearing a fur dress of red or green.

Her reappearance in popular media in the 1960s began with the children's book How Mrs. Santa Claus Saved Christmas, by Phyllis McGinley. Today, Mrs. Claus is commonly seen in cartoons, on greeting cards, in knick-knacks such as Christmas tree ornaments, dolls, and salt and pepper shakers, in storybooks, in seasonal school plays and pageants, in parades, in department store "Santa Lands" as a character adjacent to the throned Santa Claus, in television programs, and live action and animated films that deal with Christmas and the world of Santa Claus. Her personality tends to be fairly consistent; she is usually seen as a calm, kind, and patient woman, often in contrast to Santa himself, who can be prone to acting too exuberant.


Mrs. Claus has appeared as a secondary character in children's books about Santa Claus and as the main character in titles about herself.

  • Mrs. Santa Claus, Militant (one-act play) by Bell Elliott Palmer, 1914
  • The Great Adventure of Mrs. Santa Claus by Sarah Addington and Gertrude A. Kay, 1923
  • The Story of Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus and The Night Before Christmas by Alice and Lillian Desow Holland, 1946
  • How Mrs. Santa Claus Saved Christmas by Phyllis McGinley, 1963
  • Mrs. Santa Claus by Penny Ives, 1993
  • A Bit of Applause for Mrs. Claus by Jeannie Schick-Jacobowitz, 2003
  • The Story of Mrs. Santa Claus by Bethanie Tucker and Crystal McLaughlin, 2007
  • Mrs. Claus Takes A Vacation by Linas Alsenas, 2008
  • What Does Mrs. Claus Do? by Kate Wharton and Christian Slade, 2008
  • Annalina: The Untold Story of Mrs Claus by Adam Greenwood, 2011, tells the tale of the young woman who will one day become Mrs Claus. It has been adapted into a story book for young children with coloring pictures and serves as the pilot for a series of novellas about various different characters from the story.
  • Mrs. Claus Says by Nancy Claus, 2005–present, an ongoing series of children's books about life in the North pole, narrated by Mrs. Claus.



Mrs. Claus played a major role in several of Rankin/Bass' Christmas specials. In Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1964), she is seen as pestering her husband to eat, lest he become a “skinny Santa,” and in Rudolph and Frosty's Christmas in July (a movie that unites characters from Rudolph and Frosty the Snowman, among other Rankin/Bass Christmas specials), Santa calls her "Jessica" at one point.[citation needed] In Santa Claus is Coming to Town (1970), she is introduced as a teacher named Jessica, who first meets Santa Claus (then known as Kris Kringle) as a young man, when he's trying to illegally deliver toys to a town run by a despotic ruler. She assists him, and thus becomes a wanted fugitive herself with Kringle and his confederates. In light of this sacrifice, Jessica and Santa soon fall in love with each other, and marry in the nearby forest. In 1974's The Year Without a Santa Claus and the 2006 live action remake, Mrs. Claus played a large role, as she attempts to show Santa (who wishes to stay home that year for Christmas when he feels no one appreciates or believes in him anymore) that there's still some Christmas spirit left in the world. Mrs. Claus also made appearances in several other Rankin/Bass specials.

The lady was also portrayed in a television musical, Mrs. Santa Claus (1996), played by Angela Lansbury, with songs by Jerry Herman. Neglected by her husband, she goes to New York in 1910, and gets involved in agitating for women's rights and against child labor in toy manufacturing. Of course, she gets to learn how "Santa misses Mrs. Claus", as the sentimental song lyrics have it. She goes by the name of Anna.

One of Mrs. Claus's most unusual television appearances is in The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy Christmas special Billy and Mandy Save Christmas. In this story her name is Nancy and she is a powerful vampiress who, angry that Santa leaves most of the work for her, turns him into a vampire so she can take a break (which is about the six or seventh time she's done so), when she gets the idea from Mandy to try and take over the world before Billy reconciles them. Another unusual appearance is in the Robot Chicken Christmas Special, during which, in a Dragon Ball Z parody sketch, she gains powers from the North Pole's radiation, and becomes a giant monster that Goku, Gohan, and Rudolph must destroy.

In A Charlie Brown Christmas, Charlie Brown's sister Sally writes to Santa and asks, "How is your wife?" Later, in It's Christmastime Again, Charlie Brown, she writes Santa's wife herself, and, when Charlie Brown comments that some people call her "Mary Christmas," Sally congratulates her on choosing to keep her own surname. In Charlie Brown's Christmas Tales, Sally writes Santa Claus as "Samantha Claus", inadvertently thinking Samantha Claus is Santa Claus's wife.

Mrs. Claus appears in A Chipmunk Christmas, where she buys Alvin a harmonica after he gives his old one to a sick boy. Her identity isn't revealed until the end, when Santa returns home and she greets him.

Boost Mobile created some controversy with an ad featuring Mrs. Claus in bed with a snowman. One version was briefly aired on late-night TV while two alternate versions were posted online.[11] Ad Age had some commentary about the spot, including “This latest ad from Boost Mobile and agency 180, Los Angeles, features Mrs. Claus doing something very, very bad."[12] Fox News commentator Bill O'Reilly, CNN and a number of local TV news channels commented about the ads.


In 1953 Nat King Cole had a single released, "The Little Boy That Santa Claus Forgot", featuring on the flipside his rendition of a song, "Mrs. Santa Claus", with accompaniment by Nelson Riddle's orchestra.[13]

In contrast to her stereotypical portrayal, Mrs. Claus is portrayed as a woman bored with her relationship with Santa Claus in the song "Surabaya-Santa" from Jason Robert Brown's musical Songs for a New World and in the Oszkars' off-color song "Mrs. Claus has a Headache Again".

In 1987, George Jones and Tammy Wynette released a single, "Mr and Mrs Santa Claus", a love song sung by Jones and Wynette as Mr. and Mrs. Claus respectively.

Bob Rivers recorded a parody of the soul song "Me and Mrs. Jones", entitled "Me and Mrs. Claus", on his 2002 album White Trash Christmas.

Bob Ricci recorded a parody of the pop hit "Stacy's Mom", entitled "Mrs. Claus".

Video games

  • In Saints Row IV How the Saints Saved Christmas DLC, Mrs. Claus appears along with her husband. Her first name is revealed to be Mary. While she is mostly Santa's sweet, caring, and devoted wife, she is also a tough, capable fighter ("decking the halls" as Santa puts it), and unlike her husband quick to reveal the truth behind the nature of the "North Pole", the changes in to standards of what is considered Naughty, what happened the one time Santa let someone else drive the sleigh with his reindeer, among other things. Her personality and attitude earn Mrs. Claus some respect from the Saints Boss.
  • In "The Simpsons Tapped Out", during the 2017 Christmas event, "The Invasion Before Christmas", Kodos disguises herself as Mrs. Claus. In an effort to take over Christmas after being left out of Halloween, the Rigelian duo, Kang and Kodos, steal the identity of Santa and his wife. As the final prize of act one of the event, the skin, "Mrs. Kodos Claus", is unlocked by collecting 17,700 Rigellian Batteries. The costume portrays Mrs. Claus in a red, short sleeved outfit with glasses, slightly uneven lipstick, and a white mop hat. Upon unlocking the skin, the quest line, "Claus-Et Homemaker", activates, in which Mrs. Kodos Claus attempts to impersonate Mrs. Claus by doing housewife-esque things, such as baking cookies and cleaning the house. Not being skilled in any of these areas, she inevitably fails and gives up, turning to day drinking. By the end of the questline, she hires a maid, Shauna, to clean the house. Having fully satirized a lazier modern housewife, Mrs. Kodos Claus eventually murders Shauna and uses her skull as a Holiday decoration.

See also

This article uses material from the Wikipedia article "Mrs. Claus", which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0. There is a list of all authors in Wikipedia

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