Turkey Wants Remains of St. Nicholas

January 5, 2010

According to the French Press:

Turkey will ask for the return of the bones of Saint Nicholas, who Father Christmas is modelled on, from their display in Italy, local media reported on Friday.

Saint Nicholas, from the modern-day town of Demre on southern Turkey’s Mediterranean coast, is, according to tradition, the ancestor of Father Christmas, but his remains were stolen by Italian pirates in the 11th century.

“These bones should be exposed here and not in a town of pirates” in Bari, said Culture Minister Ertugrul Gunay, quoted in the newspaper Milliyet.

“If we build a museum in this town (Demre), naturally the first thing we will ask for are the remains of Father Christmas”.

The minister gave no schedule for the museum construction, which would exhibit relics of ancient civilisations, but said that after a study by experts, Turkey would request that Italy return the remains of Saint Nicholas.

Read the article here: http://www.france24.com/en/node/4960358

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