Archaeologists in Turkey have made a discovery which could settle a century-old debate … and disappoint millions of children around the world.
They have unearthed what they say is likely the previously undiscovered tomb of the original Santa Claus, or Saint Nicholas, beneath an ancient church in Demre, southern Turkey.
Demre, previously known as Myra, in Antalya province, is believed to be the birthplace of the 4th century bishop.
Cemil Karabayram, the head of Antalya’s Monument Authority, said the shrine was discovered during electronic surveys that showed gaps beneath the church.
“We believe this shrine has not been damaged at all, but it is quite difficult to get to it as there are mosaics on the floor,” Mr Karabayram told the Turkish Hurriyet Daily News.
Mr Karabayram has said he is very optimistic about uncovering Saint Nicholas’s remains, but says it will be time-consuming to scale each tile one by one and remove them as a whole in a mold.