Since the 17th century, Knecht Ruprecht has been a figure in the Nuremberg Christmas procession. He knows if you've been bad or good.
Knecht Ruprecht - Illustration from 1894
One of St. Nicholas’s assistants, Knecht Ruprecht, or farmhand Rupert, hails from Germany. Traditionally Knecht Ruprecht wears a brown or black robe and carries a bundle of switches or twigs. Around the world and throughout history, St. Nicholas has had helpers – they may help deliver gifts, or determine who has been naughty or nice and is deserving of a gift or a punishment. Knecht Ruprecht is one of the helpers intended to intimidate children and to ensure their good behaviour.
Ruprecht first appeared as a character in a German play in 1668. Other threatening and sometimes scary helpers at Christmastime in Germany include Pelznickel, Krampus and Hans Trapp. But not all of St. Nicholas’ helpers are scary and some of them stand in for St. Nicholas by delivering gifts, such as La Befana in Italy and the Christkindl in Germany.
Want to know more about Knecht Ruprecht and other characters who help St. Nicholas? Ask your local library to borrow:
Santa Claus: A Biography, written by Gerry Bowler, published by McClelland & Stewart in 2005.
I come from the woods afar and near
to tell you all that Christmas time is here
The Golden Keys are a dance band hailing from Kitchener, Ontario that has been going strong for 23 years. It started as a family-band orchestrated by Josef with sons Eric, Mike, and daughter Heidi. Today they have expanded the band to six musicians spanning almost every genre possible, performing pieces from Johann Strauss all the way to AC/DC.
The Golden Keys have European roots favouring the Oberkrainer style polka of the Slovenian culture and astonishingly sing in English, Slovenian, Croatian, Italian, Spanish and Mexican.
The Golden Keys have won numerous awards at K-W's Oktoberfest and are known to have a large fan base. Golden Keys' main focus is creating "stimmung" for any event asked for. Cheers to many more years and beers of Golden Keys music.
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FB Group Tania's paintings
A note from the artist:
"The nutcracker doll was traditionally given to protect the family and as a hope to prosperity, but I felt that it’s not those old white bearded men who protect us and make us proud, it is our children who do that, so I made him young. Flip it over to see the beautiful girl side."
See the other side of this nutcracker on Day 21.
Pants Bear and his sister hear the Tale of Krampus on the Eve of Christmas as they impatiently await their presents.
Take the "Ware the Krampus" Quiz and see how much you really know about this German folklore and how you rank with other users across the world.