Q:

What are the names of Santa's eight reindeer?

A:

Quick Answer

The names of Santa's eight reindeer are Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner and Blitzen. Donner's original name was Dunder, and Blitzen's original name was Blixem. The name of the ninth reindeer, added to the original eight much later, is Rudolph.

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Full Answer

The traditional tale of Santa's sleigh and his eight flying reindeer originated in a poem called "A Visit From St. Nicholas," later known as "The Night Before Christmas," by Clement Clarke Moore. Because he intended it only for his own children and family, Moore did not try to publish it. However, an acquaintance sent a copy of the poem to the editor of the Troy Sentinel, a New York newspaper, where it was first published anonymously on Dec. 23, 1823. The poem immediately became popular, and in the ensuing years, it was reprinted many times in newspapers and anthologies. Moore's original choice of the names of Dunder and Blixem were the Dutch words for thunder and lightning, but their names were later changed to the German words for thunder and lightning instead.

The poem about Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer was originally written by Robert L. May as an advertising promotion for a Montgomery Ward department store in 1939. The promotional book containing the poem sold millions of copies. Rudolph's popularity increased when cowboy folk singer Gene Autry released a song about him in 1949. Since then, Rudolph has become an integral part of Santa's reindeer team in Christmas lore.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    How many reindeer pulled Santa's sleigh?

    A:

    Santa has a team of nine reindeer to pull his sleigh: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, Blitzen and, finally, Rudolph, who leads them all with his bright, red nose.

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  • Q:

    What are the names of Santa's nine reindeer?

    A:

    According to tradition, Santa's nine reindeer are named Dasher, Dancer, Donner, Blitzen, Comet, Cupid, Dancer, Vixen and the red-nosed reindeer, Rudolph. They were first brought together in Robert L. Mays' 1939 book "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer," published by Montgomery Ward as a Christmas advertising promotion.

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    What are some intersting Christmas facts for kids?

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    Some interesting Christmas facts for kids include the original meaning of Christmas (that is, the celebration and story of the birth of Jesus Christ in Bethlehem) and the names of Santa's original eight reindeer: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner (or Donder) and Blitzen. The ninth and perhaps most famous reindeer, Rudolph, did not exist before the song about him was released.

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    How many reindeer does Santa have?

    A:

    Santa has nine flying reindeer who carry his sleigh across the world on Christmas Eve. Santa's reindeer made their first appearance in the 1823 poem by Clement C. Moore, "A Visit from Saint Nicholas," commonly referred to as "'Twas the Night Before Christmas."

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