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It’s All Foreign To Me: Nikolaus [PICTURES]

Today is Nikolaus, or St. Nicholas Day. Last night, children all over Germany polished their boots and left them outside for St. Nikolaus to inspect. Here’s a bilingual poem about St. Nicholas Day for your reading pleasure.

Ihr Kinder, stellt die Schuh’ hinaus, / Children, put your shoes outside
denn heute kommt der Nikolaus; / because Saint Nikolaus is coming today;
und wart ihr immer gut und brav, / and if you were always good and well-behaved,
dann lohnt’s euch Nikolaus im Schlaf. / then Nikolaus will slips gifts in your shoes while you sleep.
Er bringt euch Äpfel, Feigen, Nüss’ / He will bring you apples, figs, nuts
und gutes Backwerk, zuckersüß / and delicious pastries, sugar sweet.
doch für das böse, schlimme Kind / but for the bad, naughty child,
legt er die Rute hin geschwind.  / he will quickly leave only a switch.

We especially enjoyed several Nikolaus sightings of the day. Our little “Giessener Schlammbeiser” was dressed up as a Nikolaus. . .

Giessener Schlammbeiser

Giessener Schlammbeiser

And we enjoyed a very tasty Lebkuchen Nikolaus with almond, hazelnut, chocolate, citrus-flavored white chocolate, and marzipan decorations.

Linden and the Lebkuchen Nikolaus

Linden and the Lebkuchen Nikolaus

Poem Source

German version: [link]
English: Mine and Rob’s translation

10 thoughts on “It’s All Foreign To Me: Nikolaus [PICTURES]

  1. David Gross

    13 Dec on 2008 at 22:26

    Wow that thing looks tasty.

  2. Sarah Jo

    08 Dec on 2008 at 1:53

    Was that a gingerbread St. Nikolaus? B/c that’s awesome! I especially like all his decor: icing + sprinkles = yum!

    Question: Is this tradition a pre-Christmas? I mean, in the U.S. St. Nick comes on 12/25, so is he currently making his way across Europe?

    • xgravity23

      09 Dec on 2008 at 22:40

      @Sarah Jo – Yeah, kinda… Lebkuchen is kinda like gingerbread.

      Answer: No, German kids are gettin’ tons of booty! Nikolaus comes on December 6 and Santa comes on December 25! Dude, why didn’t we grow up here, huh? :)

  3. Lorraine

    07 Dec on 2008 at 22:12

    Javoll, it is! We always sang it in class: enjoy! Has Rob heard it? Maybe you can get him to sing it for you. ;)

    • xgravity23

      07 Dec on 2008 at 23:03

      @Lorraine – Thanks for the link! I did get Rob to sing it, but it was very half-hearted. I’ll try my niece at Christmas. :)

  4. lifestudent

    07 Dec on 2008 at 22:07

    Any Nikolaus you can eat is a good Nikolaus!

  5. Lorraine

    07 Dec on 2008 at 20:58

    Huzzah! This is my favorite German tradition (aside from Advent calendars: genius…)! We ran a little basket of goodies over to Grandma’s house yesterday morning for her to find on her front step, and I woke up with “lustig, lustig, tralalalala!” running through my head. What an Ohrworm!…I was singing it all day.

    • xgravity23

      07 Dec on 2008 at 22:01

      @Lorraine – I bet your grandma liked that! I don’t know “lustig, lustig, tralalalala”! Is it a Nikolaus Lied?