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March 2021
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The Frankfurt Christmas Market

Christmas Special Part 10

The Frankfurt Christmas Market is one of the oldest, most beautiful and, with over 240 stalls, also the largest in Germany. It is documented as early as 1393.

At one time the Christkindchesmarkt, as it used to be called, was a purely Frankfurt affair. No strangers were admitted, and so the market developed its independent character.

Down-to-earth handicrafts were offered, toys, sweets, the traditional Frankfurt baked goods and a variety of Christmas gifts.

Until the seventies and eighties of the 19th century, it was common for Frankfurt parents to buy toys for their children exclusively at the Christmas market.

Brenten, Bethmännchen and Quetschemännchen can look back on centuries of tradition as typical Frankfurt baked goods.

In earlier times, they were made in large quantities in the town houses of the city.

One of the greatest admirers of Old Frankfurt Christmas nibbles was Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, who even as a Privy Councillor in faraway Weimar received a package of his beloved Brenten from his mother every year for the feast.

The Swabian poet Eduard Mörike even dedicated a long poem of seven verses to the Frankfurter Brenten, in which he even gives tips on how to make them.

Today, the Frankfurt Christmas Market is one of the most important Christmas markets in Germany due to its size and number of visitors.

Every year, the old town of the Main metropolis around Paulsplatz, Römerberg, Liebfrauenberg, Fahrtor and Mainkai is transformed into a romantic market during the pre-Christmas Advent season, the centrepiece of which is the approximately 30-metre-high Christmas tree festively decorated with hundreds of lights in front of the city hall, the Römer.

The landmark of Frankfurt's Christmas market, the Christmas tree, is annually one of the tallest in Germany at around 30 metres.

The scent of mulled wine, hot cider and roasted almonds are as much a part of Frankfurt's Christmas market as the traditional baked goods and the varied accompanying programme.

You can find the 2017 Christmas Market programme HERE

Great Frankfurt City Ringing

On the Saturday before the 1st of Advent and on Christmas Eve, all fifty bells of Frankfurt's ten inner city churches unite for a unique concert.

More Christmas Specials:

The Great Christmas Special: Introduction and Origins

The Christmas Tree and Other Christmas Symbols

Christmas greetings from around the world

Christmas traditions around the world I

Christmas traditions around the world II

Frankfurt Christmas Recipes

The Christmas Story

Christmas markets in Frankfurt and Rhein Main

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