Margaret Minnicks has been an online writer for many years. She writes articles that are interesting to her readers.
Santa's reindeer are named in the popular Christmas poem, Twas the Night Before Christmas. The names are called out in the poem that was written in 1823 by Clement C. Moore and originally called A Visit from St. Nicholas.
The animals form a team of flying reindeer used to pull Santa's sleigh to help him get from place to place in a hurry to deliver Christmas gifts to boys and girls all over the world.
While the reindeer work together as a team, each reindeer has its own individual traits and responsibilities.
Traditionally, Santa's sleigh is led by eight reindeer: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner and Blitzen. Rudolph was not part of the original team. Santa uses Rudolph only when there is bad weather.
Now, Dasher! Now, Dancer! Now, Prancer, and Vixen! On, Comet! On, Cupid! On, Dunder and Blixem!
Dasher's name describes his main characteristic. He is always ready to "dash" off because he is fast and ready to go. He has lots of energy to be on the team with the other reindeer. Are you a dasher?
Dancer is the youngest female on the team. She is named after what he does. She is a graceful dancer among the reindeer. She had strong legs that were just a little longer than the other reindeer.
If there were a Dancing with the Reindeer show, she would surely win the competition. Do you dance every chance you get? Then you are like Santa's famous female reindeer.
The reindeer that is full of energy and love to have fun is Prancer. Prancer is the only reindeer to have a spinoff movie of his own. Prancer is the youngest male reindeer on Santa's team.
Judging from his name, Prancer is the reindeer that prances around a lot. Are you energetic like prancer who loves to have fun?
Vixen is the oldest female reindeer on the team. The other reindeer could rely on her to encourage them even in bad weather. Vixen is clever and strong-willed. She is usually harnessed alongside Dancer.
Are you clever and strong-willed? If so, then you are like Vixen who doesn't mind being harnessed with someone who needs encouragement along the way.
Comet is not as fast as Blitzen, but he is fast enough to do his part. Comet is usually hitched with Cupid. They are C and C.
Are you a Comet on your team? Do you like getting paired with someone else for the greater good? If you don't mind doing your part, then you are like Comet.
Cupid is always hitched at the front of the team because he flies straight as an arrow. He has a keen sense of direction that always keeps the team flying. Usually, Cupid and Comet are harnessed together to keep each other accountable.
Do you often get lost while driving? If so, you need to be hitched with Cupid to lead you straight to the place you need to go. If you are good at finding places, then you are the Cupid who helps others find their way to get to their destination on time.
Donner is described as the most powerful of the reindeer. Donner's name means “thunder” in German. Donner is the oldest of the reindeer and is placed at the front. He is harnessed alongside Blitzen closest to the sleigh where their strength is needed the most. Don't be surprised if you see his name spelled Donder in some documents.
Do people notice your power and recommend you to be the leader of the group? If so, then you are a Donner. You are equipped to lead the group and help others who are not as strong as you are.
Blitzen is the fastest reindeer on the sleigh team. We just learned that Donner is the German word for "thunder." Well, Blitzen is the German word for “lightning.”
He is the second strongest reindeer and is always hitched with Donner right next to the sleigh. As a duo, they are thunder and lightning. What a good combination! Perhaps you are like Blitzen.
Rudolph is not listed in the 1823 original version of the poem. He was never part of the original team. He is added to the team only he when needed in foggy weather.
The story of Rudolph is recorded in a separate book about a reindeer with a very shiny nose that glowed in the dark. He is the smallest of all the reindeer and the one who has saved a lot of Christmases.
Rudolph was a social outcast because of the way he looked. Have you ever been body shamed because of the way you look? Or do you have a feature that has come in handy when it was needed to save the day? If so, then you are like Rudolph with the red nose that glows.
Rudolph's story was originally written by Robert L. May for the Montgomery Ward department stores in 1939. The book was given to children in the store at Christmas time. According to this original story, Rudolph's glowing red nose made him a social outcast among the other reindeer. Visiting Rudolph's house to deliver his presents, Santa observed Rudolph's glowing red nose in the dark and used it as a headlight to guide his sleigh in the severe fog. Rudolph accepted Santa's request to lead the sleigh for the rest of the night, and he returned home a hero for having helped Santa Claus.
Rudolph, with his red nose, has gone done in history as the most famous reindeer of them all even though he was not one of the original reindeer and not a character in Twas the Night Before Christmas story.
Fast and always ready to "dash off"
He dashes out the door.
Loves to dance
Youngest and loves to have fun
Loves to primp
Take Charge Reindeer
Last to be on team only when it is foggy
Nose glows in the dark
- "Twelve Days of Christmas" Items and Cost
Every year the prices of the items in the "Twelve Days of Christmas" song change. These are the prices established by the PNC Wealth Management Christmas Index.
Evelyn on December 14, 2018:
I loved this article.