Santa clause IS based on a real person.<quoted text>the story of Santa Clause and the Loch ness monster also have gone far. everyone loves a good myth...
No driver of a sleigh with reindeer though, just one of the best most honest, loving and kind people the world has ever seen. Nicholas of Myrna.
A cool thing he did;
From wikipedia -
"In his most famous exploit, a poor man had three daughters but could not afford a proper dowry for them. This meant that they would remain unmarried and probably, in absence of any other possible employment, would have to become prostitutes. Hearing of the poor man's plight, Nicholas decided to help him, but being too modest to help the man in public (or to save the man the humiliation of accepting charity), he went to his house under the cover of night and threw three purses (one for each daughter) filled with gold coins through the window opening into the man's house.
One version has him throwing one purse for three consecutive nights. Another has him throw the purses over a period of three years, each time the night before one of the daughters comes of age. Invariably, the third time the father lies in wait, trying to discover the identity of their benefactor. In one version the father confronts the saint, only to have Saint Nicholas say it is not him he should thank, but God alone. In another version, Nicholas learns of the poor man's plan and drops the third bag down the chimney instead; a variant holds that the daughter had washed her stockings that evening and hung them over the embers to dry, and that the bag of gold fell into the stocking"
Pretty cool guy. The myth is grounded in a real person.
As for nessie, just a fabrication to bring in money!