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Christkind

The Christkind is a figure in Germany that brings presents to the children on Christmas Eve, especially in southern parts of the country.

Until the reformation in the 16th century people in Germany did not give each other presents at Christmas, instead the children received their presents from St.Nicholas (Nikolaus) on 6th December.  Martin Luther, however, opposed the catholic saints and apparently introduced the idea of giving presents on 24th December.  These were brought by the Christkind, who is often depicted in white and similar to an angel.

It is said that it comes in through the window and leaves presents around the Christmas tree while the children are out of the room.

Even though the Weihnachtsmann is ever more present, especially in the media, people still ask children “what did the Christkind bring you?”

To hear a simple explanation and a short discussion in German, listen to the podcast:

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2 Responses to “Christkind”

  1. AllThingsGerman.net» Blog Archive » Der Weihnachtsmann Says:

    […] Der Weihnachtsmann The Weihnachtsmann has an unusual roll to play in German Christmas celebrations. In some parts of Germany, mainly in the North, he is said to bring the presents to the children on Christmas Eve. In much of Germany and especially in the South this is the job of the Christkind. […]

  2. Der Weihnachtsmann | Christmas | German Words Explained Says:

    […] The Weihnachtsmann has an unusual roll to play in German Christmas celebrations. In some parts of Germany, mainly in the North, he is said to bring the presents to the children on Christmas Eve. In much of Germany and especially in the South this is the job of the Christkind. […]

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