Turkish archaeologists may have found the tomb of Santa Claus in Turkey. Saint Nicholas, who is famously known around the world as Santa Claus, has been a favorite among the children for obvious reasons.
Surveys have now uncovered an intact temple in the burial grounds of Saint Nicholas church in the Demre region of Turkey. Recently, the church in Demre region of Antalya has drawn many visitors after a massive restoration. Demre is built on the ruins of an old city called Myra, where the saint is believed to have lived.
Cemil Karabayram, the director of surveying and monuments in Antalya, told The Guardian:
“We have obtained very good results but the real work starts now. We will reach the ground and maybe we will find the untouched body of Saint Nicholas.”
Earlier it was thought that the body of Saint Nicholas was transferred to Bari in Italy by sailors after the fall of the Byzantine empire before Muslims in the first Crusade, nearly 700 years after St. Nicholas’ birth. His church still stands tall in Bari. Apart from Bari, Venice also has some relics of the revered saint.
After the survey, the Turkish archaeologists initially believed that the remains were of some local priest and not a saint. They have also found an intact and untouched temple below the church where they believe the body of the saint could be buried.
Scholars will now access the temple beneath the church to determine if the body belongs to Saint Nicholas. The temple is believed to contain some ancient relics and mosaics that need to be preserved.