Santa's Reindeer Names

The history behind Santa's sleigh and reindeer. Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner and Blitzen!...but there's more to the story.

  1. Dasher
  2. Dancer
  3. Prancer
  4. Vixen
  5. Comet
  6. Cupid
  7. Donner/Donder/Dunder*
  8. Blitzen/Blixem*
  9. Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer**

*Santa's original 8 reindeer were first introduced in 'A Visit from St. Nicholas', more commonly know as 'The Night Before Christmas' in 1823. In this original printing the last two reindeer names are Dunder and Blixem, which in Dutch mean 'thunder and lightning'.

When Clement Clark Moore, the credited author, printed the poem in 1844 these names were changed to Donder and Blitzen.

**Enter Rudolph in 1939 and then the song 'Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer' in 1949, where the two reindeer have since been referred to as Donner an Blitzen, German for 'Thunder and Lightening'. This is now the most common referral to the original 8 reindeer names in modern times. Rudolph was introduced to the original 8 over 100 years later.

There's much more to the poem's true authorship, too much to go into here. But if you're into it...