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Christmas Elf Name Generator

Looking to deck the halls with boughs of holly? In the mood for some Christmas cheer? Our Christmas elf name generator will give you a unique name and personality for one of Santa's little helpers, and help you spread some seasonal fun – because amusing, embarrassing or annoying your friends is part of what Christmas is all about!

About Christmas Elf Names

Are you unusually cheerful and jolly? Do you feel the need to give gifts and spread seasons greetings? Looking to entertain your kids or annoy your colleagues? Need to find the right name for your 'Elf on the Shelf'? Then you've come to the right place! So get ready for some Christmas fun for little helpers of all ages!

Regarding Santa's Elves

Santa Claus himself was originally referred to as an 'elf' in the poem 'A Visit from Saint Nicholas' (more popularly known as 'T'was The Night Before Christmas') by Clement Clarke Moore in 1823, but Christmas elves didn't start properly appearing in stories until the mid-to-late Nineteenth century. Little Women author Louisa May Alcott wrote a book called Christmas Elves in 1852 that was never actually published, while the American woman's magazine Godey's Lady Book popularised the idea of Santa's workshop with a cover in 1873 that showed Santa surrounded by elves busy creating toys. Since then, they've spread all through popular culture – Christmas elves are almost always diminutive little creatures dressed in green with pointy hats, and they've appeared widely in books, TV shows, and films.

Christmas elves feature strongly in Elf (2003), which starred Will Ferrell as Buddy, a human who clambered into Santa's sack of presents as a baby and was raised at the North Pole among the elves. When Buddy finds out that he isn't an elf himself, the film charts his journey to New York to find his real father, a curmudgeonly book publisher who's seriously lacking in Christmas spirit. The Polar Express (2004) features a whole army of elves, who aid Santa in finding out who's been naughty and who's been nice via a high-tech surveillance centre at the North Pole. There was also a major role for a Christmas elf in Santa Claus: The Movie (1985), where an elf named Patch tries to use Santa's toymaking powers for himself, but runs into the evils of corporate consumerism instead.

Christmas Elf Names Around the World

Outside of film and television, there are also different kinds of elves and helpers for Santa in different European cultures, matching Santa's different names like St. Nicholas, Papa Noel, and SinterKlaus. St. Nicholas's helpers in Belgium and the Netherlands are called Zwarte Piet (Black Peter), and first appeared as a character in an 1850 book by Jan Schenkman, a teacher based in Amsterdam. The Zwarte Pieten are portrayed as Moors from Spain, usually wearing Renaissance dress, and it's their primary job to amuse children before St. Nicholas arrives by distributing traditional Dutch confectionary like kruidnoten and pepernoten. In Germany, Santa's helpers are the Knecht Ruprecht; in Luxembourg, they're the Hoesecker, and in Iceland, they are called the Yule Lads, and they spend the days between December 12th and 24th visiting homes and either leaving presents or playing tricks on children.

The Christmas elf has also made an odd comeback via the book 'Elf on the Shelf: A Christmas Tradition', an illustrated story (that also comes complete with an elf toy) by Carol V. Aebersold and Chandra A. Bell, with illustrations by Coe Stewart. The book was originally self-published in 2004, and tells the story of the 'scout elves' who watch over houses during the Christmas period and report back to the North Pole every night to tell Santa which children have been either naughty or nice. The book has been adapted into a 2011 animated 30-minute TV special, but it has also been criticised by some for the way it emphasises the idea of the elves monitoring children's behaviour.