German Christmas Traditions Highlights

Many of the Christmas traditions we Americans take as our own actually derived from Europe. With most of the traditions coming from Germany. The Christmas spirit is still strong to this day and here are some of the beloved customs you might find around where you live or definitely in Germany

Christmas Trees Originated in the 16th century from Germany they would chop down a spruce and decorate it with apples, nuts, and paper flowers. Even Martin Luther was the first to put candles on his Christmas tree due to him wanting to always recreate a night he shared with the moonlight highlighting the beauty of a tree.

Christmas Markets are everywhere when it’s that time of the holiday. In Europe, shops will set up and American companies switch to a Christmas setting and at some times offer some baked goods, hot chocolate, and the general festive atmosphere that German Christmas markets are famous for. The oldest Christmas market in Germany is the city of Dresden, which dates back to 1434.

Mulled Wine is Germany’s traditional Christmas drink served hot and added spices like cloves and cinnamon give it that Christmas smell, feel and taste phenomenal. The drink has evolved due to the times so they have tasted differently throughout the years.

German Christmas Stollen is a loaf like fruitcake filled with nuts, raisins, candied citrus, and spices. It’s a bread-like cake made of yeast, water, and flour. This dish started in the 14th century and typically eaten around Christmas time.

Advent Wreaths was invented by Johann Hinrich Wichern who was a German pastor at the time. He ran an orphanage and to keep the children from asking about when Christmas would be coming he decided to celebrate all of December by lighting a candle every Sunday of that month. The first Advent Wreaths were constructed out of old cartwheel and small candles.

Saint Nikolaus Day is a great way to keep your children obedient due to them having to be goo children to please Santa and not be on his naughty list. December 6 in Germany is mandatory for young children to leave their shoes outside the door because Santa fills your shoes with sweets, cookies, oranges, walnuts, and small Santa Claus figurines made out of chocolate.

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