The History and Culture of Europe, shared with you by our European volunteers!

16 de Dezembro de 2019.

Christmas time in Germany

From “Nikolaus” to “Christkind” – who brings the presents? A long time ago, Saint Nicholas presented the children with gifts every year on the 6th of December. This act was a Catholic veneration of saints. Protestants, however, did not believe in this and so – probably even the reformer Martin Luther made sure that the distribution of presents was postponed to the 24th of December. From this point, Jesus alias the “Holy Christian” brought the gifts. This finally became the German “Christkind”. Despite this, up to now, “Nikolaus” brings small presents to the children, on the 6th of December. They have to put their clean shoes in front of their door and will find some presents in them, the next […]
13 de Dezembro de 2019.

Fröhliche Weihnachten!

The smell of fresh Christmas cookies and streets decorated with beautiful fairy lights everywhere! Austria can be a Christmas paradise, because if you’re lucky enough it will be covered in a thick layer of snow and long before the 24th December, when the main celebration takes place, the whole country is in Christmas mood. It usually all starts at the beginning of December, as that’s when the Christmas markets start and the streets are enlightened with fairy lights – so all the towns start looking Christmassy. In this time people like coming together at the Christmas markets to drink mulled wine or meet up at someone’s home and enjoy some homemade Christmas cookies. The most famous ones are called “Vanillekipferl”, […]
11 de Dezembro de 2019.

Christmas in Liechtenstein

Going to church on Christmas or spending more time with the family? This is in our country very different. Christmas means general spending time with the family in our country. It depends on how religious you and your family are and which religion they have. In our catholic family, it is a tradition to go to the mass on the 24th of December. With this event, we celebrate the birth of Jesus and afterward, we can do our own family traditions. On Christmas Eve, we always eat a lot and enjoy the moment where we all are together. We eat something special that we are not eating every day. Because we are a few vegetarians in our family, our dinner […]
7 de Dezembro de 2019.

The legend about Nibelungen

This well-known German legend is about the biggest treasure of the medieval. All starts with Siegfried who is a knight. Siegfried discovers a cave and finds a dragon in it. The strong knight kills the dragon and goes deeper in the cave. There he finds a gnome of the Nibelungen and fights with him. After his victory he takes the big treasure of the gnome.  Now he only needs a wife for his luck. He finds the right one at the king’s court of Worms. He wants to marry Kriemhild, the sister of king Gunther. The king only agrees because he needs him to master the tasks that Brynhild sets for him. Because Brynhild is the woman that King Gunther […]
5 de Dezembro de 2019.

Lalli and Bishop Henry

In the mid 12th century, there was a man called Lalli. He was living with his wife Kerttu in a little cottage.  One night when Lalli wasn’t home, Bishop Henry decited to stop by Lalli’s and Kerttu’s house and asked for food and drink. The bishop had been travelling a long way with his horse and he still had a long journey ahead of him.  Kerttu kindly let the bishop in and gave him a meal. After eating his stomack full, Bishop Henry gave money for Kerttu as a thank you, and moved on. Soon after this Lalli came home, and Kerttu told him about the bishop. For some reason Kerttu changed one small detail about the event. She told […]