Christmas in Northern Italy, Austria and Germany
In the German-speaking countries and in some regions of Northern Italy such as Friuli Venezia-Giulia and Trentino Alto Adige, Christmas is celebrated in the family with the traditional Christmas tree. However, the period of advent is characterized by a very ancient and particular tradition, that is linked, to the figure of Krampus.
This is a malicious character who is opposed to Santa Claus and Santa Claus.
In fact, Krampus represents a devil with the appearance of a terrifying billy goat. The story tells that he was defeated and subdued by Santa Claus, thus becoming his servant.
All this is remembered during a noisy and spectacular parade, in which Santa Claus parades along with one or more boys dressed as Krampus, giving the children that they behaved well the candy. But at sunset, Santa Claus “disappears” and the Krampus begins to unleash frightening everyone, only to suddenly disappear after a few hours of noise.
The figure of this evil and spiteful billy goat is contextualized in a fun show, but at the same time leads to reflect on the existence of evil, as a reality with which man has always had to deal.
The ancients attributed to Krampus a series of dramatic events related to crops and diseases. The goat therefore, represents evil since pre-Christian times, yet in the context of the Christmas party reminds us that evil exists, but can be exorcised and rejected by the power of good, represented by Santa Claus, who triumphs becoming a protector figure.
The fact of involving children serves as a teaching and warning on the meaning of Christmas: to commit oneself to putting into practice all positive values such as honesty, generosity, sincerity and love for others.
Discover other tradition around the world in this post: the five most particular Christmas celebrations