Saturday, December 6, 2008

St. Nicholas Day

Usually celebrated on Dec. 6, St. Nicholas Day is a festival specifically for children in many European countries, related to surviving legends of the patron saint of sailors. However, Nicholas is usually known for his reputation as a bringer of gifts, which is where the legend of the American Santa Clause came from. In Munich today, you get the best of both worlds as they celebrate on the 6th and 25th, despite the fact that the relationship here is complex – as Martin Luther replaced the St. Nicholas festival (in his protest of organized religion) with the Christkind or Christ Child celebration. On the eve of Dec 5th small children put a boot outside the front door, and St. Nicholas fills the boot with gifts and sweets.

1 comment:

Daniela said...

sorry, troy, this is not true. In Bavaria St. Nicholas is visiting the children (usually allready on 5th of december) in the evening - personally! When you walk through the streets, you meet many many St. Nicholas (often students) on their way to the families. Parents handle them a little letter (about the behavior of the child). Nicholas puts it in his golden book.And the parents give him gifts, which he puts in his big bag. - Children are very nervous, when St. Nicholas comes tu visit them, because of the letter: What does Nicholas say to them? Does he agree with the children, or is he angry? - In former times St. Nicholas was accompanied by a wild man called "Krampus", who would punish the children, when they had not been good. But today, St. Nicholas comes mostly alone.
When I was a child, St. Nicholas was accompanied by an Angel...
I like your blog very much, dear Mr. or Mrs. troy, you are a very good fotographer!