more about yesterday’s post (zwarte piet)

When Matt and I lived in Prague, there was also a figure called "Cerny Petr" – also "Black Peter" but he did not look like a slave to my memory… I’m having some trouble (while at work) finding out more about him… anyone?

This is all I got from Wikipedia:

The Companions of Saint Nicholas (or Father Christmas) are a group of closely related figures who accompany St. Nicholas in many European traditions. The tradition is particularly strong amongst the Germanic peoples, with some regional expression in the U.S. (largely from European ethnic groups).

The most recognized companion, especially outside of Europe, is Knecht Ruprecht, which translates as Farmhand Ruprecht or Servant Ruprecht. Other companions include Krampus (Austria, Bavaria, Croatia, Slovenia, Friul, Hungary [spelled Krampusz]), Klaubauf (Bavaria), Bartel (Styria), Pelzebock, Pelznickel, Belzeniggl, Belsnickel (Pennsylvania), Schmutzli (Switzerland), Rumpelklas, Bellzebub, Hans Muff, Drapp or Buzebergt (Augsburg), Hanstrapp (Alsace, East of France) and Le Père Fouettard (Northern France). In the Czech Republic, St. Nicholas or Svatý Mikuláš is accompanied by the Čert (Devil) and Anděl (Angel). These servants are often associated with, but are distinct from Saint Nicholas’ helpers in the Netherlands and Flanders (called Zwarte Piet, meaning Black Pete(r) in English).

There is also a movie directed by Milos Forman, from 1964.  Maybe I’ll look into that later today…  for now I have to get back to work!
 

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2 comments

  1. Take a look at poor Peter

    I vaguely recall references to Cerny Peter, but he bore no resemblance to the six-to-eight black men who accompany Sinterklaas in these parts.

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