Clement Clark Moore was born in New York Metropolis in 1779 and, lengthy earlier than his loss of life 84 years later, established a popularity as a scholar. A famous lecturer and author, he additionally generously supported theological schooling. But his life would benefit little greater than a footnote in New York’s historical past — apart from the one poem for which he’s remembered.
Written for his youngsters in 1822, it was first printed (anonymously) within the Troy, NY, Sentinel the subsequent 12 months. The poem was, in fact, “A Go to From St. Nicholas” (“The Evening Earlier than Christmas”).
’Twas the night time earlier than Christmas, when all by the home
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The stockings had been hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas quickly could be there;
The kids had been nestled all cosy of their beds,
Whereas visions of sugar-plums danced of their heads;
And Mamma in her ’kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had simply settled our brains for a protracted winter’s nap;
When out on the garden there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the mattress to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.
The moon, on the breast of the new-fallen snow,
Gave the lustre of mid-day to things beneath,
When, what to my questioning eyes ought to seem,
However a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer,
With a bit previous driver so full of life and fast,
I knew in a second it have to be St. Nick.
Extra fast than eagles his coursers they got here,
And he whistled and shouted and referred to as them by identify;
“Now, Dasher! now, Dancer! now, Prancer and Vixen!
On, Comet! on Cupid! on Donder and Blitzen!
To the highest of the porch! To the highest of the wall!
Now sprint away! sprint away! sprint away all!”
As dry leaves that earlier than the wild hurricane fly,
After they meet with an impediment, mount to the sky;
So as much as the house-top the coursers they flew,
With the sleigh filled with toys, and St. Nicholas too.
After which, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of every little hoof—
As I drew in my head, and was turning round,
Down the chimney St. Nicholas got here with a sure.
He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
And his garments had been all tarnished with ashes and soot
A bundle of toys he had flung on his again,
And he look’d like a peddler simply opening his pack
His eyes — how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
His cheeks had been like roses, his nostril like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the beard of his chin was as white because the snow;
The stump of a pipe he held tight in his enamel,
And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath;
He had a broad face and a bit spherical stomach
That shook, when he laughed, like a bowl filled with jelly.
He was chubby and plump, a proper jolly previous elf,
And I laughed, once I noticed him, regardless of myself;
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
Quickly gave me to know I had nothing to dread;
He spoke not a phrase, however went straight to his work,
And fill’d all of the stockings; then turned with a jerk,
And laying his finger apart of his nostril,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose;
He sprang to his sleigh, to his staff gave a whistle,
And away all of them flew just like the down of a thistle.
However I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
“Completely satisfied Christmas to all, and to all a superb night time!”
— CLEMENT CLARK MOORE