Monday, November 28th
Saturday and Sunday, it was the first weekend where the Krampus were in Salzburg!
You are probably asking you what are the Krampus?
This is a Krampus!
In Austro-Bavarian Alpine folklore, Krampus is a horned, anthropomorphic figure described as "half-goat, half-demon",who during the Christmas season, punishes children who have misbehaved, in contrast with Saint Nicholas, who rewards the well-behaved with gifts.
In traditional parades and in such events as the Krampuslauf (in English: the Krampus run), young men dressed as Krampus participate; such events occur annually in most Alpine towns. Krampus is featured on holiday greeting cards called Krampuskarten.
A Krampuslauf is a run of celebrants dressed as the wicked beast, often fueled by alcohol. The tradition resurrects a centuries-old ancient ritual meant to disperse winter's ghosts.
More physically, Krampus appears in many variations, most share some common physical characteristics. He is hairy, usually brown or black, and has the cloven hoovesand horns of a goat. His long, pointed tongue lolls out. He has fangs.
Krampus carries chains, thought to symbolize the binding of the Devil by the Christian Church.
He thrashes the chains for dramatic effect. The chains are sometimes accompanied with bells of various
Of more Pagan origins are the ruten, bundles of birch branches that Krampus carries and with
which he occasionally swats children.
The birch branches are replaced with a whip in some representations.
Krampus appears with a sack or a basket strapped to his back; this is to cart off evil children for drowning,
eating, or transport to Hell. Some of the older versions make mention of naughty children being put in the
bag and being taken.
You can find the Krampus:
-A toned-down version of Krampus is part of the popular Christmas markets in Austrian urban centres like in Salzburg. In these, more tourist-friendly interpretations, Krampus is more humorous than fearsome.
In Styria is a state or Bundesland, located in the southeast of Austria.
Similar figures are recorded in neighboring areas. Klaubauf Austria, while Bartl or Bartel, Niglobartl, and Wubartl are used in the southern part of the country.
-In most parts of Slovenia, whose culture was greatly affected by Austrian culture, Krampus is called parkelj and is one of the companions of Miklavž, the Slovenian form of St. Nicholas.
-In many parts of Croatia, Krampus is described as a devil wearing a cloth sack around his waist and chains around his neck, ankles, and wrists. As a part of a tradition, when a child receives a gift from St. Nicholas he is given a golden branch to represent his good deeds throughout the year; however, if the child has misbehaved, Krampus will take the gifts for himself and leave only a silver branch to represent the child's bad acts.
-The North American Krampus celebrations, though rare, are a growing phenomenon.
So, Sunday evening, we went to Hallein (suburb of Salzurg and next to Rif) to see the Krampuslauf.
We payed two Euros for going there (for the entire family) and we had a stamp on our hand. It was really funny (I was in the front just behind the barriers) so I saw all the Krampus (there were so many!) but at one moment, a Krampus swatted me with the branches on the legs: it hurt a lot!!
With the little children, the Krampus were very kind: they gave them candies and took pictures.
Despite that, it was a very cool evening because we also laughted a lot with all the family!
The Krampus inspired also movies like: