- Title: GERMANY: PAGAN RITUALS KEPT ALIVE IN GERMAN TOWN OF FORSTSEEON.
- Date: 2nd December 2000
- Summary: FORSTSEEON, GERMANY (DECEMBER 2, 2000) (REUTERS) SLV FIELD; MAN HERDING SHEEP SCU MASK; PEOPLE WEARING MASKS; SCU MASK AND COSTUMED PERSON SCREAMS FOR CAMERA SLV TRACTOR PULLING WAGON FULL OF MASKED PEOPLE; SCU MASK ON GROUND COSTUMED AND MARCHING DRUMMERS; SLV COSTUMED PROCESSION; DANCING CEREMONIAL CIRCLING OF MASKED PERSONS CARRYING WOODEN STAR SLV CEREMONY MASKED PERSONS WITH BELL INSTRUMENTS PEOPLE IN MASKS DANCING WITH FLAMING TORCHES
- Embargoed: 17th December 2000 12:00
- Location: FORSTSEEON, GERMANY
- Country: Germany
- Topics: Entertainment,Quirky,Religion,Religion
- Reuters ID: LVA4IT33E3DY2228NN2QUCK5D5VD
- Aspect Ratio:
- Story Text: The people of a southern German town carry on pagan rituals by putting on robes, heavy wigs and intricately carved wooden masks to attend processions as winter approaches.
In Forstseeon, Germany, the townspeople keep alive the pagan rituals of Bercht (also known as Perchta), an awe-inspiring south German goddess.
Legend has it that the goddess's followers, mythological figures known as Perchten, raced across the sky and stole the souls of children.
Perchta rituals began in the late 19th century and were revived in 1954 after a period of decline.
At this time of year, when the days begin to draw in, the Perchten take their ghoulish-looking display from house to house.
In a more benign interpretation of the tradition, these days the drum, dance, and marching processions are said to protect families, homes, and animals from ill fortune and bring blessings and good luck.
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