Tag Archives: Mrs Jeffrey

Elizabethan Entertainment by Maria and Casey

In our English class this term we have been studying Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare. We have been researching entertainment in the days when Shakespeare was alive.

When the Elizabethan people had finished their jobs (some were blacksmiths and carpenters) they liked to relax and enjoy some entertainment. Entertainment from those days is very different to what it is now. Here are some of the entertainments that people enjoyed back in the Elizabethan era.

Hunting was one of the most popular sports in the Elizabethan era. Force hunting was one of the most famous types of hunting. This sport was mainly for rich, young and active men. The men would go into the forest and hunt for wild boars. Not all men could take part in this event because they would need a licence. All the forests at the time were owned by the royal family and they didn’t want just anybody in the forests so they demanded everybody in their forests had a licence. The laws were very strict about this and if you were found without a licence you could be blinded or even hanged.

A 17th century engraving on bear-baiting [Public domain]

A 17th century engraving on bear-baiting [Public domain]

Another form of entertainment enjoyed in the Elizabethan times were blood sports. Blood sports were also really popular and were played by many people.Bull-baiting, bear-baiting, cock-fighting and dog fighting were all types of blood sports. These sports were so popular that nearly every town had its own bull and bear-baiting ring and even Queen Elizabeth loved to watch these sports. People in Elizabethan times didn’t think these sports were violent and  didn’t think about the animals used in the sports and how they were getting hurt or even killed.

 

Another common thing in Elizabethan times were plays. As well as Shakespeare there were many other famous playwrights in the Elizabethan times. Christopher Marlow who was born in 1564 and died in 1593 and Thomas Kyd who was born in 1558 and died in 1594 were both famous playwights from the City of London. Thomas Kyd has become even more famous because many people suspect that he may have written Hamlet and that Shakepeare stole it from him. Plays were first performed in Inn-yards but as they grew more popular people began to build lots more theatres  and more and more plays were written and performed. Thomas Kyd’s most famous play was The Spanish Tradegy and Christopher Marlow’s most famous play was Edward II.

Christmas was a very important time for people in the Elizabethan times. It was the time for people to eat, drink and relax. In 1588 Queen Elizabeth ordered everyone to at least have a goose to eat on Christmas Day. Many rich people would have an amazing feast at Christmas. Christmas ran from the 24th December to the 6th January. The final day was called Twelfth Night and was the last time the people could celebrate before returning to normal life.

These were some of the things that we found interesting about entertainment in the Elizabethan era. Some of the things Shakespeare himself would have enjoyed. Entertainment then was very different from what it is now, but these were the things that people liked to do for fun.

Sources:

Elizabethan era, http://www.elizabethan-era.org.uk/elizabethan-entertainment.htm Accessed 20/10/ 2016

Elizabethan Theatre Blog by Holly

Today, I am going to be writing a blog about the Elizabethan theatre. I am going to be writing  a blog entry on  Elizabethan theatre because my English class are currently reading ‘Romeo and Juliet’ this term.

The Elizabethan theatre became popular as Queen Elizabeth liked acting and entertainment, however the London authorities did not feel the same way about acting and entertainment so they refused to allow plays within the city

Between 1567-1614 there were 12 amphitheatres built (an amphitheatre is an open air venue which was used to play sports and watch plays). Then between 1576-1629 there were 9 playhouses built (the playhouse was another place you could go and watch plays). One of the most famous playhouses from this time was The Globe. The Globe had a 1500 plus audience capacity and up to 3000 people would rush to The Globe and its grounds. It was built 1597-1598.There was no central heating or even a roof  so the plays were performed in The Globe during summer months. During the winter months the plays would get moved to the indoor playhouses. The Globe has the same wooden poles as the original.

Globe Theatre, London by AndreasPraefcke [Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0]

Globe Theatre, London by AndreasPraefcke [Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0]

Back in 1576 there was a law passed making it illegal to perform/act without a licence. Women were not allowed in the theatre until 1662, meaning men had to play the parts of women for years. Younger men/boys would usually play the parts of women while older men would play the male roles. This meant that there would be no hugging or kissing on the stage.

All in all the Elizabethan theatre was very different to the theatre today. I hope you enjoyed my blog on the Elizabethan theatre and thank you for taking your time to read it-  Holly

Sources:

The Life, Times, Works and Biography of William Shakespeare, http://ww.william-shakespeare.info, accessed 12/09/2016

Elizabethan Theatre: Part One, https://www.theatrefolk.com/spotlights/elizabethan-theatre-part-one, accessed 12/09/2016

16th Century Fashion by Emma and Erin

In our class we are studying Romeo and Juliet and me and my partner have decided to learn more about fashion in the 16th century when William Shakespeare was around. Here are some topics we shall touch on: hats and headdresses, shoes and boots, men (upper class, middle class and peasants), Woman (upper class, middle class and peasants), Fashion icons/ Trend setter, materials and dyes and jewelry.

Hats and headdresses

In the 16th century hats and headdresses were the biggest/grandest ever seen in England. Pupils and scholars were the first to wear bonnets. The most fashionable gentlemen wore bonnets. The french hood is a jeweled hat and covers most of their hair. Neck ruffs were originated in Spain, It frames the face and men also wore them.

Shoes and boots

The 16th century had very extreme and simple footwear. Women had very simple footwear because they wore very long skirts and dresses. No one could see their footwear. Ordinary people would have/wear simple shoes. A type of shoe is duck bills, they were shoes with extremely broad toe. In the early 16th century shoes might have been slashed. Shoes were slashed for decorative purposes.

Men’s fashion

There were upper class, middle class and peasants (or stinkards/groundlings), (what they were called in the 16th century). The upper/middle class men wore: flat caps with feathers, shirt frills(which later became ruffs), Jerkins, doublet sleeves, nether hose, broad toe shoes with slashing, upper hose and cod piece. Peasants would have worn straight or louse fitted trousers that reached mid calf. Men wore many layers of clothing as you can see from our list. The silhouette of a man in the 16th century resembles a square.

Women’s clothing

There are upper/middle class and peasants. The upper/middle class woman wore: parlet, kirtle, smock, corset and long skirts or dresses. Peasant woman would wear: a one piece, a kirtle, sleeveless dress and a gown/overdress. Some upper class woman would hang small sweet-smelling spices on their belts to hide the rotten old smell of the streets. The silhouette of a woman in the 16th century resembles a triangle.

Fashion icons/trend setters

The 16th century had very powerful people who then became everyone’s fashion icons. Here are some trend setters: Queen Elizabeth I is remembered as a fashion icon because of her day to day clothing choices, King Frances I of France became the first true trend setter. The trend setters had set up a foundation for our modern-day styles. Members and monarchs of their court were made better by the trends.

A young Queen Elizabeth I by Percy Anderson [Public domain]

A young Queen Elizabeth I by Percy Anderson [Public domain]

Materials and dyes

Here are some of the most popular fabrics and trims: linen, silk, velvet, leather, lace and they used gold and silver for embroidery/trims. Buttons were only worn by the rich. They were made with gold and silver sometimes had a setting of gemstones. Wool was worn by everyone. The most expensive dyes were: bright red , purple and indigo.

pendant_kremlin_exhibition_moscow_2011

Pendant by shakko [Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0]

Jewelry

Many women wore jewelry to make an outfit original and more them. It was very popular in the 16th century. Rich people would have better quality jewelry than others.

As you can see fashion in the 16th century was very elaborate. It was also much more complex than present day fashion.

 

 

Sources

Fashion through the ages Shoes and boots by Fiona MacDonald (ticktock media LTD, 2006)

Fashion through the ages Hats and headdresses  by Fiona MacDonald (ticktock media LTD, 2006)

Panorama a history of fashion from loincloths to Lycra by Jacqueline Morley (MacDonald, 1995)

Sixteenth-Century Clothing, http://www.fashionencyclopedia.com/fashion_costume_culture/European-Culture-16th-Century/Sixteenth-Century-Clothing.html accessed 02/10/16

Women’s Clothing, http://www.lepg.org/women.htm accessed 02/10/16

Mens Clothing, http://www.lepg.org/men.htm accessed 05/10/16

16th Century Fashion, http://mens-fashion.lovetoknow.com/16th_Century_Fashion accessed 05/10/16

Martin Luther King By Lucy And Kayla

In English we’ve been looking at the book “The Fire Eaters” which is set in the 60s. We have chosen to research Martin Luther King Jr. because he is a huge icon for the Civil Rights movement.

Martin Luther King was born on the 15th of January 1929 in Atlanta, Georgia , USA. He was originally called Michael but his dad re-named him in 1939. He was raised in a Catholic family with brother, Alfrid Daniel Williams King, and sister, Christine King Farris. In 1948 he was ordained as well as marrying Corretta Scott in 1953. Corretta Scott was a black woman and was a fabulous singer. They went on to have four children.

Martin Luther King Jr. Photo by Walter Albertin [Public Domain].

Martin Luther King Jr. Photo by Walter Albertin [Public Domain].

King was invited to the White House to meet President J F Kennedy.

Martin Luther King with Robert Kennedy. Photo by Abi Rowe {Public Domain]

Martin Luther King with Robert Kennedy. Photo by Abi Rowe [Public Domain]

Civil rights became less of a priority for people until King started to protest in 1961 and 1962, targeting Birmingham, Alabama. Both events were unsuccessful and he even got sent to jail for leading the protest. Fire hoses and dogs were set on protesters. He was interviewed on TV catching the attention of millions of people, This made him a prominent figure. He gave the civil rights movement a voice.

Even though huge progress was made, less than a month later whites bombed an all black church in Birmingham. It killed four young girls and caught King’s attention. He spoke at their funeral.

On August 28th 1963 Martin debuted his famous speech “I Have A Dream.” More than 200,000 gathered in Washington and more watched on the TV. He became a symbolic figure for civil rights across the world and gave hope to millions of black Americans and more.

Five years later, Martin Luther King was assassinated on the 4th of April at the age of 39. This shocked millions and only made the fight for rights even tougher without their leader.

Martin Luther King Jr is an inspirational man and changed civil rights forever. He has shown how hard it was in the 60’s and how one act can affect all of the world forever.

“If you can’t fly, then run

If you can’t run, then walk

If you can’t walk, then crawl

But whatever you do,

Keep on moving forward.”

– Martin Luther King Jr

Did Martin Luther King achieve his lifedream? http://www.bbc.co.uk/timelines/z86tn39,  accessed 20th October 2015

Martin Luther King Jr  1929-1968  By Anita Ganeri (Franklin Watts, 2003)

Fidel Castro by Liam and Reagan

In English we are currently reading a book called ”The Fire Eaters” by David Almond. ”The Fire Eaters” is set in the late summer of 1962. So, in pairs, we chose a topic related to an event that was happening in the 60’s. We have chosen to study Fidel Castro. Here is a bit about him:

Fidel Alejandro Castro Ruz was born on the 13th of August 1926 in Biran, Cuba. His parents were named Angel Castro and Lina Ruz Gonzalez. His dad was an immigrant but his mum was born in Cuba. He also had a brother named Raul.

In his early life he liked to read and cook. He attended the University of Havana and got a degree in law. He became a political activist in law school then later became a lawyer.

In 1959 he and his brother Raul attempted to take over the Cuban government, but failed and were sent to jail. He was sentenced to jail for 15 years but was let out after 22 months. He fled to Mexico with his brother and met a man named Guevara who helped Castro and his brother create a small army. Castro, Raul, Che Guevara and his small army went back to Cuba and based themselves in the Cuban mountains. They started a guerrilla war against Batista’s government. They gained lots of support by telling the Cubans that he would  bring back democracy and freedom in Cuba. So Batista left the country and on New Year’s Day 1959 Fidel Castro became the new Prime Minister of Cuba.

Castro made a law that all rent prices would be halved in price because lots of Cubans were homeless. He also provided free health care for everyone. He got rid of all the American companies and started up new businesses. Thousands of people lost employment because of Castro’s ideas.

Fidel Castro. Photo by Marcelo Montecino [Licence: CC BY-SA 2.0]

Fidel Castro. Photo by Marcelo Montecino [Licence: CC BY-SA 2.0]

In the 60’s America and Russia were involved in a war. Cuba let Russia place their missiles in Cuba so that it would have been easier for Russia to blow up Cuba therefore America and Cuba were now enemies. This nearly started WW III because President Kennedy, the current leader of America, wasn’t going to accept Russia and Cuba ‘teaming up’ to fight America. He tried many times to overthrow Castro. Russia gave Cuba lots of support by letting them use their machinery. The CIA told JFK it would be easy to overthrow Castro but it wasn’t.

When the Soviet Union fell apart Cuba really struggled to survive on their own. In 1976 Castro became the President of Cuba and would be in power for another 32 years until he gave up power in 2008. Fidel Castro is still alive today and is still living in Cuba. Russia eventually took their missiles out of America.

We chose Fidel Castro because he was a big part of the hostilities which was currently happening in the book we are reading  ‘The Fire Eaters’ and the main character in it ‘Bobby Burns’ is scared in case he would need to fight in this war.

Websites we used for our research were:

Fidel Castro, http://www.ducksters.com/biography/world_leaders/fidel_castro.php, accessed 14/11/15

Fidel Castro biography, http://www.biography.com/people/fidel-castro-9241487, accessed 12/10/15

The Cuban Missile Crisis by Peter Chrisp (World Almanac Library, )

60s Fashion by Caitlin and Grace

In English we have been looking at the book “The Fire Eaters.” This book was set in the 1960s. We have chosen 1960s fashion and it is very eye-catching. The swinging sixties was a time of change and fashion. The 60s was a time of bright clothes, polka dot dresses and hippies. The women wore lots of dresses with stripes, polka dots and big bold colours. At night in the 60s women wore nylon nightgowns. Men wore lots of suits and ties , flared jeans and crazy patterns. Twiggy was a very famous model from the 60s and was based in London. She had big eyes that stand out.

Twiggy drawing by Failuresque [Licence: CC BY 2.0]

Twiggy drawing by Failuresque [Licence: CC BY 2.0]

One famous designer was Mary Quant. She created some classic 1960s fashion including the mini skirt, coloured tights and plastic raincoats.

In the mid 60s was the beginning of the hippies. Their hair was long and free. They also wore bright colours and patterns. Some hippies weren’t very hygienic or clean.

In the 60s hair and makeup was a big part of fashion. Their hair had lots of volume. Some hair styles they had were beehive curls and buns. Also they found it trendy to wear ribbons. Another main thing in the 60s was makeup. Eye makeup was a big thing. They had cat eyes and smokey eye.

Jackie O was JFK’s wife. She was a huge inspiration in women’s fashion. Two piece suits with pencil skirt and tailored jackets were very popular along with the pillbox hat. Skirts became narrower as time went on.

Overall the 1960s was an important era for fashion. We still use the same makeup and hairstyles in our generation today.

One of our favourite quotes by Twiggy is “Being young isn’t about age. It’s about being a free spirit.” Also another one of our favourite quotes is “There’s no need to dress like everyone else. It’s much more fun to create your own look”. We like these quotes because they say that you’re free to dress like you want. You can have your own style and taste because everyone is different.

 

Apollo 11 Moon Landing by Anna, Regan and Ebony

In our class we are reading David Almonds “The Fire-Eaters”. We have been given the task of selecting an important event which happened in the 1960s because this is when the book is set. So we chose Apollo 11.

apollo11 tagxedo

“I believe this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal before this decade of landing a man on the Moon and returning him safely to Earth.”

Quote from president Kennedy from 1963.

This was the start of the space race between the Soviet Union and the USA to get a man on the Moon.

NASA started the race by holding an unmanned mission to test if the Moon was safe enough for humans. They did this by using animals. This was a success in a while later they decided to hold a manned mission test but this went terribly wrong. On January 27th 1967 a terrible fire broke out during a practice launch. Sadly the astronauts who were taking part died in this tragic accident. Two years later despite the set back they finally got where they wanted to be… the Moon.

Apollo 11 happened on the 20th of July 1969 at 9:37am when all eyes of the world were watching as they sent three men to the Moon. These men were Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins who was the pilot of the spacecraft.

It took them 12 minutes to get out of the Earth’s atmosphere, however it took them 76 hours to get to the Moon. At 4:17pm the craft touched down on the moon. They were five hours ahead of their planned time of Armstrong walking on the Moon.

“One small step for man one giant leap for man kind.”

These words were famously said by Neil Armstrong as he took his first steps on the Moon. 19 minutes after Armstrong took his first steps he was joined by his fellow astronaut Buzz Aldrin and together they took pictures of the Moon’s surface and terrain, and planted the American flag in the Moon.

They did some scientific tests on Moon rock and took home 193 grams of Moon rock. With the help of the Houston Space Center’s amazing technology they were able to talk to President Nixon. Approximately they were on the Moon for 14 hours and both Armstrong and Aldrin were both back in the craft around 1 am on the 21st of July.

They left a plaque on the Moon saying,

“Here men from the Planet Earth first set foot on the Moon July 1969 AD. We claim peace for all mankind”.

At 12:56 am they began to make their descent to Earth eventually splashing into the Pacific Ocean.

We got all our information from:

Apollo 11, http://www.history.com/topics/apollo-11, accessed 22nd November 2015

Apollo 11, http://www.kidzsearch.com/wiki/Apollo_11 accessed 22nd November 2015

Apollo 11 Mission Overview https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/apollo/missions/apollo11.html accessed 22nd November 2015

The Escape From Alcatraz by Conor and Benjamin

This escape was attempted by Frank Morris and brothers John and  Clarence Anglin. All of these men were in Alcatraz for Armed Robbery and were serving life sentences.

Escapees from Alcatraz by Salticidae [Licence: CC BY-NC-SA 2.0]

Escapees from Alcatraz by Salticidae [Licence: CC BY-NC-SA 2.0]

From a young age, the Anglin brothers were in and out of jail. Just teenagers, the brothers broke out of many Reformatory Schools. Before Alcatraz, they had been imprisoned in Atlanta State Penitentiary. They were caught attempting a breakout from Atlanta and so Alcatraz was deemed appropriate for them. Several months later, Morris joined the pair in Alcatraz.

The plan was originally conspired by four men, the fourth being Allen Clayton West. West is believed to be the mastermind behind the plan.

West had a job in the prison maintenance industry and so, had the privilege of free access to the utility corridors and on top of the cellblock. The group had decided to work on a boat to escape the island on. They decided to build it on the top of the cellblock. West had convinced the guards to allow him to hang sheets over the bars to avoid “paint splatter”. The guards agreed and they had cover. Now they needed to be able to reach the location with ease. The cells were all identical and had a small vent on the back wall. Behind the vent was an unused utility corridor. The pipes in the corridor served as ladders to the top of the cellblock. They started to chip away at the vent and the surrounding rock.

Panorama of Alcatraz. Photo by Christian Mehlführer [Licence: CC BY 2.5]

Panorama of Alcatraz. Photo by Christian Mehlführer [Licence: CC BY 2.5]

Once they had easy access, they could begin manufacture on their raft. They managed to acquire approximately eighty rainjackets which they sewed and glued together. They used a magazine from the prison library to aid them in construction. Morris had managed to adapt an accordion into an airpump for the raft.

They fashioned some oars from cardboard and made them more durable by backing them with some wood. They also made some makeshift buoyancy aids.

Now the final hurdle was being able to reach the outside of the prison. They spotted a shaft that led up to the roof, but the way was blocked by some sturdy iron bars. They knew that it would require a power tool to break them. West volunteered to attempt to mend a generator and found that it ran on two engines. So rather than mend the both of them, he repaired one, and stole the other engine to craft their power tool. Once they had managed this, they realised that it was much too noisy so they had to work during the time designated for instrument practice so that the noise didn’t sound just as obvious. Soon enough, they were able to reach the roof. Now they were ready to make their escape.

On the night of June 11th 1962, the prisoners squeezed through the vent for the final time. They climbed up the pipes to reach the roof of the cell block. One inmate; Leon “Whitey” Thomson was in his cell at the time of the great escape and could recall hearing a spanner falling from one of the men’s pockets and clanging off the pipes all the way to the ground.

They realised once they had reached the cell block roof, that Allen Clayton West hadn’t finished chipping the vent. As previously discussed, they left without him and left behind his buoyancy aid.

The trio scaled their way down the wall and rushed to the shoreline. They had never tested whether or not the raft was sea-worthy so it was an incredibly risk “hit or miss” scenario. It is believed that the boat managed to stay afloat for half of the journey and gave way half a mile from the mainland. The men were never heard from again.

Alcatraz Barber Shop. Photo by JeredB [Licence: CC BY 2.0]

Alcatraz Barber Shop. Photo by JeredB [Licence: CC BY 2.0]

The escapists had managed to pass the nightly roll call by crafting crude but lifelike paper mache which included real human hair which the men had gathered from the floor of the barbershop.

The next morning at roll call, the guards noticed the false heads and alerted the F.B.I. Naturally, they first questioned West who didn’t prove to be very helpful as he only told them what was safe and didn’t jeopardise the men’s chance of survival.

Several days later, an oar washed up on the neighbouring Angel Island along with a waterproof bag of photos of the Anglins and contact details and addresses. They had blatantly ensured that these pictures were kept dry, which suggests that the boat didn’t survive the voyage and the escapees were swept under the Golden Gate Bridge and out to the Pacific Ocean.

Location of Alcatraz. Photo by NASA [Public Domain].

Location of Alcatraz. Photo by NASA [Public Domain].

If they had survived, they planned to rob a clothing store and to steal a car and potentially head to Mexico to seek refuge.

Whether or not the men survived, it is arguably one of the greatest escape attempts to date. As we are studying the works of David Almond’s “Fire Eaters” which was also set in 1962, we thought that this event would symbolise and would be easily related to Bobby Burns’ life. He feels as though he needs to escape life’s evil clutches and seeing as how the Alcatraz escape had happened four months prior the story taking place, the theme of escape is potentially still lurking in Bobby Burns’ mind.

Sources

  • The Great Escape From Alcatraz, http://www.alcatrazhistory.com/alcesc1.htm, accessed November 2015
  • Escape! Breakout from Alcatraz Documentary by David M Frank, 2000
  • Discussion between Conor and Ben (November 2015)

The Story of J.F.K. by Caitlin, Massimilo and Sara

John F Kennedy. Photo by Cecil Stoughton [Public Domain]

John F Kennedy. Photo by Cecil Stoughton [Public Domain]

In English we have been reading a book called The Fire Eaters by David Almond which was set in the 1960’s, specifically 1962. So we got a chance to pick a topic in groups and we chose John Fitzgerald Kennedy , because he had a very interesting life.

It was May 29th 1917 when a new American president was born in Brooklyn although at the time he did not know he was going to be a future president ; his name was John F. Kennedy. John did not have a happy childhood. He was often ill and because of that he read a lot of books. He lived with his mother Rose Elizabeth Kennedy, father Joseph Kennedy, and he was one of nine children in the Kennedy family. Kennedy’s father was a wealthy man and came from a Catholic background. Kennedy’s father, Joseph Kennedy, served the Democratic Party for many years

Joseph made a lot of money through his lifetime and pushed his sons to do their best.

Time passed, Kennedy got older and started to do something with his life. Kennedy ran for President of America and won by a narrow vote in the 1960’s .When John Fitzgerald Kennedy was president he proposed a lot of ideas like landing the first man on the Moon and he was the first president to dance with a black women at a inaugural ball. Kennedy had a lot of problems to handle including the Cuban Missile Crisis which appears in The Fire Eaters but we are going to go further ahead in time to November 22nd 1963.

Kennedy was in Dallas, Texas. People were cheering for him; it was a nice sunny day. But then suddenly BANG!!! Kennedy was shot. The first bullet passed through his neck and struck Governor Connally leaving him unconscious. Kennedy was hit again but this time it was fatal because the bullet struck him in the head.

In conclusion, John Fitzgerald Kennedy was a kind, generous and important man who will always be remembered by the USA.

The sources we used to get our information were:

John F. Kennedy Jr. Biography, http://www.notablebiographies.com/Jo-Ki/Kennedy-Jr-John-F.html, accessed 15.9.15

John Fitzgerald kennedy, http://www.factmonster.com/ipka/A0760619.html, accessed 14/9/15

Christmas in the Netherlands by Abigail

In the Netherlands the Dutch eagerly await December 5th for it is on this day that they celebrate the comming of Sinterklaas avond or St. Nicholas Eve, whose legends of generosity and kindness are well known.

In the Netherlands St.Nicholas is known as Sinterklaas. Dutch childeren are told that he sails from Spain on his feast day, they fill their shoes with hay and sugar for his horse and awake them filled with gifts such as nuts and candy. Sometimes Sinterklaas appears in person in the children’s father  or an uncle. He questions the children about their behaviour during the past year. He hasn’t always been a kind figure but he is now.

In mid -November Dutch television broadcasts the official entry in the Netherlands of St.Nicholas and his helper ‘Zwarte Piet’ live to the nation. Coming by steamer from Spain, each year they dock in the harbor of a different City or Village. Wearing traditional bishops robes, Sinterklaas rides into town on a white horse to be greeted by the mayor. A motorcade and a brass band begin a great parade which leads Sinterklaas and Piet through the town. Sinterklaas is the most important tradition for the Dutch , a 2008 centre for Dutch culture survey found. Celebrated the evening of December 5 is traditional tasty food , it is the main time for family gift- giving.