- uploaded: Dec 28, 2009
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The figure who stands behind the jolly old man of Christmas is older even than this, however. In fact, his story takes us back to the beginning of recorded history, when some other characters climbed up trees of a different kind, and returned with gifts for everyone. These were not toys or perfume or watches, but messages concerning the year to come, the turning of the seasons, or the fate of the world. These people were shamans, who performed the functions of priest, historian, and record keeper, scientist and magician.