Santa Claus character jug modeled by Michael Abberley and produced by Royal Doulton of Burslem, England, in 1996 special edition of 1,000 commissioned by the Home Shopping Network. The legend of Santa Claus dates to the third century A.D. In Lycia Nicholas was born to wealthy parents. While still young, Nicholas' parents died during an epidemic, leaving their vast fortune to their son who dedicated his life to God by becoming a priest. He then used his wealth to help the poor. For all of his good works in the church, he became the Bishop of Myra. Centuries later he was awarded sainthood and Saint Nicholas became the patron saint of children, sailors and pawnbrokers. The story goes that when Nicholas was a young bishop, he heard of a rich merchant who lost his wealth and his ability to provide dowries for his three daughters. During one night Nicholas took bags of gold into their home, placing them in stockings. Thus was born the legend of Santa Claus, a jolly old elf who to this day lives at the North Pole and travels the world on Christmas Eve to bring toys to all good little boys and girls. Christmas bells form the handle of this jug.