Here’s a double-barrelled question: Why does Father Christmas wear glasses and could he do with an update? |
Mr Claus’ portrayal of a jovial, friendly old man certainly suits the glasses wearing image, but what are the reasons behind it? Intrigued? Read on!
A Little Bit of History
Father Christmas has not always been shown to wear specs, and in fact the original St Nicholas, who the modern figure is based on, died in 343AD when the concept of taking an eye test wasn’t even close to being considered. It wasn’t until the mid 1800s, when Thomas Nast was commissioned to come up with images of Father Christmas for Harper Collins magazine, that the bearded gentleman adopted the modern semblance we are all familiar with today. Soon after, when eye tests and eyewear were much more commonplace, especially on the more mature ladies and gentlemen of the twentieth century, the idea that good old jovial Santa should don a pair was a natural assumption.
In grottos the world over, Father Christmas’ representatives all wear the customary wire rimmed specs that have now become very much a part of his costume and he just wouldn’t look the same without them.
So, are the glasses just a prop or could St Nick actually need them? It’s a good question and to answer it, we need to consider what could actually be wrong with his eyes.
Here are a few possibilities.
A condition affecting mainly the older generation, presbyopia causes farsightedness. If Father Christmas suffered with this issue he would definitely have to wear his glasses while driving his sleigh but would probably take them off to read the endless wishlists from the children. It is unlikely that this is the problem with his vision.
He Needs Reading Spectacles
Much more likely the cause of his need to wear specs, Santa could be typical of a man his age and need to use his glasses for reading. Reading eyewear simply magnifies the text and can be purchased relatively cheaply, although if you would prefer a reliably good pair, it is best to see an optician for a thorough eye test.
Santa Needs a Prescription
Lots of people suffer with bad eyesight from even a young age, and many have a condition known as myopia (not being able to see things far away) and so they need prescription glasses. Maybe this is why Mr Claus needs his spectacles - to correct his blurred vision.
Should Santa Change his Look?
There is no denying that times change and Father Christmas needs to maintain his credibility with the girls and boys who so depend on him every year. Of course, he will no doubt always sport his iconic red and white coat and snowy white beard, but making a subtle change in his eyewear could just give him the edge when it comes to relating to the younger generation.
While our favorite festive fellow certainly suits his traditional rounded spectacles with the gold wire rims, he might benefit from an updated look. Perhaps an eye test and a pair of designer glasses could be just what he needs. So who’s going to tell him?
David Paul opticians epitomise everything you want from a local eyewear specialist. Not only do they offer eye test appointments, they also provide an expert service that includes OCT testing, advice on buying your ultimate pair of glasses and much more. The team of experienced eyewear specialists and expert optometrists are there to make your glasses and contact lens buying experience the best it can be.
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