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Poetry Xtras » "Account Of A Visit From St. Nicholas" by Major Henry Livingston, Jr.

Poetry Xtras provide brief commentaries, cultural & literary sign posts, or anecdotes about poems featured on Poetry X, written by the poet or a critic expert in the poem.

In 2000, Don Foster, an English professor at Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, New York, wrote a book titled Author Unknown: On the Trail of Anonymous (New York: Henry Holt, 221-75) in which he revealed that "A Visit From St. Nicholas" (Moore's alteration of the title) could not have been written by Clement C. Moore, although Moore had written another poem, "Old Santeclaus," which was similar in tone to Livingston's earlier poem.

While Livingston's version was published in the Troy Sentinel on 23 December, 1823, Moore took credit for the poem in Poems (New York: Bartlett and Welford, 1844), changing "Dunder and Blixem" to "Donder and Blitzen."


As reported by Representative Poetry Online (U Toronto 2002).

—Jough Dempsey

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