In all the celebrations and observances of Christinas, it remained for the goodhumored, materialistic Germans to bethink them of rendering it a period of peculiar pleasure for ehildren. By the Germans Christmas is eiiteemed the "Children's Festival;" and with them originated the world-famous myth of Saint Nioholas, alias Santa Claus, alias Kris Kringle, the patrón of Yule-tide nnd the friend of all proper boys and prettily-behaved little girls. Happily the reform in the observance of the day, which began in Germany, reached and wascopiedin other portions of Europe. Christmas is now, as well, "Children's Day" in England and France ; in toys and confeetions for the period the children are distinctly remembered in Italy, and in America the Christmas tree, the Stockings huiig by the chimnoy with care, and the harmless, merry games and inDocent glee of childhood supplant much of the boisterous carousal which once tended to render 1lio day rollickiüg and riotous. It was fornierly thr mstom, and is still the practiee in some of the small villages of Nbrth Germany, to commission a personage known as Kneoht Bupert, responding with our Santa Claus, to distribute all the presente made by parents and friends of the children. Disguised by a mask, wearirjg an enormous flaxen beard, ciad in a long white robe, and shod in tall buskins, Knecht Itupert ■went from house to house, was received by the parents with great ceremony, called for the children, and. after the Btrictest investigation into their deserving, dispensed gil'ts accordingly. Santa Claus, we all know, deporta himself dïfferently. When busiest he is invisible, and generally he is amiable, forgiving of the shortcomings to which childImmanity is liable, but now and then ioes not, hesitate to leave a rod, in token oï his estimate of some particularly untuly lass or ungovernable lad.