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Krampus!

The other day while out shopping I noticed that some of the stores already had Christmas stuff on the shelves and I was surprised to find these two looking up at me. In the major part of Europe there is some sort of tradition surrounding Saint Nikolas day on December 6th and Croatia isn't any different. The first time my kids were in town and the devil came up to them, they all burst out in tears, not exactly child friendly. Even little kids know what evil is when they see it and it's nothing to be laughed about. These are different post cards from years ago that also show the tradition:

Now many people dress up in hideous costumes and parade around town, remind me to stay home. I don't want to meet St. Nick or his partner Krampus!

In many parts of Croatia, Krampus is described as a devil, wearing chains around his neck, ankles and wrists, and wearing a cloth sack around his waist. As a part of a tradition, when a child receives a gift from St. Nicolas he is given a golden branch to represent his/hers 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. Children are commonly scared into sleeping during the time St. Nicolas brings gifts by being told that if they are awake, Krampus will think they have been bad, and will take them away in his sack."

Anyhow, just a little cultural lesson for you folks, it's real and it happens today!!!

23 comments:

  1. Thanks for the most interesting cultural lesson! I'd never heard of it before.

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  2. Ewww, those guys are really creepy looking! It's like a combination of Halloween and Christmas... how can anyone put two more opposite "holidays" together?!

    I just don't understand all this fascination with evil/dark creatures/subjects! It is a sad and scary time we're living in these days. That just means Jesus is coming soon, though!

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  3. I haved seen this too...kinda think it is horrible...we have been to the markets in Austria and were so surprised to see such evil things this time of year..Christmas stuff is out in the states already...
    Actually I have started my shopping already....not much this year.
    ~deby

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  4. Good grief!!! And I thought Halloween was bad. Poor kids, you know they're traumatized.

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  5. That is really bad! how could people put their children though that? The eyes of the world are most definitely blinded, and obviously cold hearted!

    My Daughter has her own blog now. The link is on my blog. And she sent Hannah an email with the link.

    Thanks

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  6. I can not believe this. Do you think they may do the same thing here?! I am terrified for my kids. I will certainly stay home Dec 6th!

    Interesting to know...but scary to experience!

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  7. Hello. I found you at Jungle Hut and decided to come for a visit.
    I have never heard of such creatures either and they seem just plain evil to me.
    It's fascinating to learn about different cultures though and make me more thankful than ever for my own.

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  8. There's a long standing fascination with darkness in Mexico too. It's amazing how the Catholic church is just fine with completely paganized church symbols. I'll have to blog the pictures of the death cult shrines around TJ. They are just another part of the Catholic Church there! It's overtly demonic.

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  9. That is just plain creepy! Just wanted to say hello. :)Have a happy Friday.

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  10. That last picture is creepy!

    ~Kristi

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  11. Oh my! That's really scary!

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  12. Wow, I had no idea St. Nick had partners like that! Thanks for the lesson!

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  13. OH MY! That's a scary thing to teach a child. I've never heard of this, so thank you for sharing this cultural event.

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  14. Thanks for sharing. I never knew any of that stuff before.

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  15. My goodness it is so scary for adults, I would cry myself! Cannot believe they would come up to children!

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  16. I find this very interesting. My family has never celebrated Halloween b/c of where it originated from and b/c of its association with wickedness. However, my husbands family doesn't celebrated Christmas b/c of where it originated and its association with wickedness. I have yet to grasp this. We do Christmas with my family, but not his. My family has never done Santa Clause or Christmas trees and kept it all about Jesus and giving to others. Christmas is my favorite holiday. I love the memories it brings. This post has opened my eyes a little more to my husbands view of Christmas. I am sure these Croatian traditions are probably stemmed from the origination of Christmas/ Winter Solstice. I am going to do more of a study now. I didn't realize these celebrations associated with Christmas time still existed. I assumed it was all in the past. The comment that the children are scared into going to sleep is very interesting. American children go to sleep also. Our song "He knows when your awake. He knows when your asleep. He knows if you've been good or bad..." Could this be a cleaned up combination of the two: Saint Nick and Krampus? I am definately going to look into the Christmas holiday now! Please let me know anything else different about the Croatian celebrations.

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  17. That is so devilish. I wouldn't have anything to do with it, either!

    A lot of today's American customs and traditions come from that same murky history. They've just been "Americanized".

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  18. I can see why your kids burst into tears, I wanted to just looking at these horrible pictures!

    How sad this is... makes me even MORE thankful for missionaries like you all out there trying to preach/teach what is right!

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  19. I have not read that book. I am going to try to find it. Thanks for stopping by.

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  20. I think in America we are sheltered to the demonic activity surrounding common holidays in foreign countries! A very eye-opening post. Thank you!

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  21. Hi there,

    I found your blog on My Life and Ponderings and I visit from time to time. I had to comment on this one. I have never heard of this before. Like another person commented it's like Halloween and Christmas together. Yikes ! As Christians we don't celebrate Halloween for obvious reasons and we just recently quit celebrating Christmas because it's so materialistic that it's not about Jesus. We though about just making it very simple, but we realize that being human we would eventually get swept up in the materialistic part of it and be like everybody else.

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  22. Oh no that 's really bad for the children. They don 't deserve to be frightened into being good.

    I know in India also parents scare their kids saying ;be good otherwise an old man will come and carry you off. Some kids might take aversion to old people this way.

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Hey thanks in advance for leaving a comment, sure do appreciate it!!

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