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About this poet

Clement Clarke Moore was born on July 15, 1779, in New York City.  He received a BA from Columbia College in 1798 and an MA in 1801. Moore was the author of Poems (Barlett & Welford, 1844), which included the poem “A Visit from St. Nicholas.” Popularly known as “The Night before Christmas,” this iconic children’s poem was first published anonymously in the Troy Sentinel in 1823. Moore also published several academic works, including A Compendious Lexicon of the Hebrew Language (Collins & Perkins, 1809). He taught at the General Theological Seminary in New York City from 1821 to 1850.  He died on July 10, 1863, in Newport, Rhode Island.

Old Santeclaus

Old Santeclaus with much delight
His reindeer drives this frosty night,
O’er chimney-tops, and tracks of snow,
To bring his yearly gifts to you.

The steady friend of virtuous youth,
The friend of duty, and of truth,
Each Christmas eve he joys to come
Where love and peace have made their home.

Through many houses he has been,
And various beds and stockings seen;
Some, white as snow, and neatly mended,
Others, that seemed for pigs intended.

Where e’er I found good girls or boys,
That hated quarrels, strife and noise,
I left an apple, or a tart,
Or wooden gun, or painted cart.

To some I gave a pretty doll,
To some a peg-top, or a ball;
No crackers, cannons, squibs, or rockets,
To blow their eyes up, or their pockets.

No drums to stun their Mother’s ear,
Nor swords to make their sisters fear;
But pretty books to store their mind
With knowledge of each various kind.

But where I found the children naughty,
In manners rude, in temper haughty,
Thankless to parents, liars, swearers,
Boxers, or cheats, or base tale-bearers,

I left a long, black, birchen rod,
Such as the dread command of God
Directs a Parent’s hand to use
When virtue’s path his sons refuse.

This poem is in the public domain.

This poem is in the public domain.

Clement Clarke Moore

Clement Clarke Moore

Clement Clarke Moore was born on July 15, 1779, in New York City. He was the author of Poems (Barlett & Welford, 1844), which included the poem “A Visit from St. Nicholas.” 

by this poet

poem
'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house  
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;  
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,  
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;  
The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugar-plums danced in their