Ho ho ho

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For other uses, see Ho ho ho (disambiguation).

"Ho ho ho" is a textual rendition of a particular type of deep-throated laugh or chuckle. Most associated today with Santa Claus and Father Christmas, it was connected in the 17th century with the English mythological figure of Puck.

The laughter of Santa Claus has long been an important attribute by which the character is identified, but it also does not appear in many non-English-speaking countries. The traditional Christmas poem A Visit from St. Nicholas relates that Santa has:

. . . a little round belly
That shook when he laugh'd, like a bowl full of jelly

Popular Culture[edit]

As a Canadian Postal Code[edit]

Canada Post uses the characters H0H 0H0 as the postal code for letters to be sent to Santa Claus.[1]

The full address is:

SANTA CLAUS
NORTH POLE  H0H 0H0
CANADA

In French, Santa's name translates as "Father Christmas", addressed as:

PÈRE NOËL
PÔLE NORD  H0H 0H0
CANADA

Since the postal code system has 'H0' set up to represent a tiny or rural village ('0') inside of the city of Montreal or Laval ('H'), H0 codes are quite rare and a seasonal allocation of H0H does not appear with any other normal postal codes.

Urban legend[edit]

There have been false urban legends claiming that use of this laugh is being discouraged in Australian malls by Westaff, a recruitment firm supplying many of the mall Santas. Supposedly, the firm claimed that the laugh, when used loudly, could be frightening to children and could even be considered derogatory to women, and recommended that a Santa lowering his voice and saying "ha ha ha" might be more welcoming.[2] However, these legends have been proven false.[3]

Characters associated with this laugh[edit]

References[edit]