Father Christmas toby jug designed by William K. Harper and produced by Royal Doulton of Burslem, England, in a 1993 limited edition of 3,500. Father Christmas is the British version of Santa Claus. He evolved from Saint Nicholas, an exceedingly kind, gift-giving bishop of Myra in what is now Turkey (A.D. 300s). For hundreds of years, people celebrated the feast of Saint Nicholas on the anniversary of his death, December 6. In England such festivities were banned when Henry VIII founded the Church of England. They were later resumed under Queen Victoria, but in the image of Father Christmas, a gentleman dressed in a long tailcoat and squire beaver hat appearing at Christmas time. After Clement Moore's poem, "A Visit From St. Nicholas", and as more influence came to Britain from America, he began to evolve into the fat, jolly, benevolent character known today. Dressed in green and considerably slimmer in the late 19th and early 20th century, it wasn't until after World War II and increasing advertisements by Coca-Cola in the British Press that the image of Father Christmas permanently merged into that of the European-American Santa Claus.