January 10, 1573

Birth of Simon Marius (1573-1624) in Gunzenhausen, Germany. Marius was the astronomer who named the four largest moons of Jupiter. He was one of the first astronomers to use a telescope, the first to report the spiral nebula in Andromeda and one of the first to note sunspots.


January 10, 1785

Death of Heinrich Wilhelm Stiegel in Charming Forge, PA (born near Cologne, Germany). Stiegel immigrated to Philadelphia in 1750. There he built an ironworks and soon expanded to a second ironworks in Lancaster. At the boycott of British imports he expanded his manufacture of window glass and bottles at a company he founded called the American Flint Glassworks. He was highly successful and became known for his mansions, servants and high life style. As economic conditions deteriorated with the approach of the war with England, however, his fortunes declined. By 1774 he was in debtors prison.

January 10, 1797      Annette-Droste-H

Birth of Annette von Droste-Hülshoff (1797-1848) in Hülshoff, Germany. She was one of the leading writers of the 19th century. She is most noted for her poetry, Gedichte (1838) and Das geistliche Jahr (1851). Her novella, Das Judenbuch (1842) is also highly respected.

January 10, 1847

Birth of Jacob Schiff in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. Schff immigrated to the United States in 1865 where he would become one of America’s leading railroad bankers. He was the head of the investment bank, Kuhn, Loeb and Company. His financial backing led to Edward Harriman taking control of the Union Pacific Railroad. He later backed Harriman in his struggle with James J. Hill and J. P. Morgan for control of the Northern Pacific Railroad. In his later years he became a philanthropist and was a major donor to Harvard and Cornell universities and to the American Red Cross.

January 10, 1866


Birth of Karl Aschoff (1866-1942) in Berlin. Aschoff was a pathologist who had studied at the University of Bonn and taught at the University of Freiburg. He discovered phagocytes (cells which ingest foreign substances) and Aschoff’s bodies (nodules in the heart related to the rheumatic process).

January 10, 1880

Birth of Grock (stage name of Charles Wettach) in Reconvilier, Switzerland. Grock was a circus clown and later a stage comedian of great popularity. His autobiography, Die Memoiren des Königs der Clowns, was published in 1956.

January 10, 1890

Death of Johann Joseph Ignaz von Döllinger in Munich, Germany. Döllinger was a Roman Catholic priest, a professor of canon law and a church historian in Munich. When the First Vatican Council of 1869-1870 defined the infallibility of the pope Döllinger could not accept the doctrine. He joined the Altkatholiken who broke with the Vatican after the council. His writing on the subject of papal infallibility was listed on the Roman Catholic Index of Forbidden Books and he was excommunicated in 1871.

January 10, 1920

The Versailles Treaty takes force.

January 10, 1949



Death of Erich Dagobert von Drygalski in Königsberg, Germany (now in Russia). A geographer and glaciologist, Drygalski led an expedition to the Antarctic from 1901-1903 and published the results of the findings in Deutsche Südpolar-Expedition 1901-1903. The 20 volume work appeared between 1905 and 1931. Drygalski was a professor at the University of Munich.






Christmas Day is a public holiday in Germany on December 25. Many people spend the day with their family. Large meals with traditional foods are served and Christmas decorations are displayed. German Christmas decorations include nutcrackers, Christmas pyramids, and cribs.


What Do People Do?

People generally spend Christmas Day with family members or close friends. Some attend church services and many sing traditional Christmas carols. A large meal is traditionally eaten in the afternoon or early evening. Typical dishes include:

  • Roast goose or duck stuffed with apples, chestnuts, onions or prunes.
  • Red cabbage with onions and apple.
  • Boiled potatoes.
  • Dumplings.

People also eat turkey, beef, venison or wild boar in some parts of Germany.


Public Life

Christmas Day is a public holiday in Germany. Post offices, banks, stores and businesses are closed. However, stores in some tourist areas may be open and stores at railway stations, airports and along highways are usually open.

There are some restrictions on selling alcohol, public performances and dancing. Public transport services may run as usual, at a reduced service or no service depending on where one lives or intends to travel.

german tree


Traditional Christmas decorations include:

  • Christmas trees.
  • Small candles or electric lights.
  • Wooden nutcrackers.
  • Incense burners in various shapes.
  • Cribs with figures representing Mary, Joseph, Jesus, the shepherds and the three wise men.
  • Gingerbread houses decorated with sweets.
  • Christmas pyramids (three-dimensional scenes that are turned by a fan driven by candle heat).

Schwibbogen (decorative arc-shaped candle holders) are displayed in the Ore Mountains in Saxony. Each candle holder is made of a single piece of wood or metal and holds more candles on top of an arc. The arc is filled with figures to create a scene. Some scenes represent aspects of the Christmas story, while others display local traditions or events.

Sweet snacks are popular at Christmas. Traditional treats include: Plätzchen (flat biscuits covered in sugar frosting); Lebkuchen (gingerbread); Pfeffernüsse (gingerbread covered in sugar frosting and small candies); Stollen (a rich bread filled with dried fruit and a marzipan roll); and Spekulatius (small cookies flavored with cinnamon, nutmeg and other spices).









This Elderly German Couple Steals The Show Every Time They Go Out


Berlin fashionistas Britt Kanja and Günther Krabbenhöft have aged like fine wine. Despite their silver age, the two of them lead active lives, and not only appear in all kinds of cultural and social events, but absolutely wreck their dance floors as well. Moreover, wherever they go, the couple always stands out in the crowd with their impeccable looks. Britt and Günther share a great taste in fashion and have mastered combining their wardrobe into sharp and timeless couple outfits that will never go out of style.


Günther actually went viral a couple of years ago and earned himself the nickname of Hipster Grandpa. He attributes a lot of his evident health to dancing, which he discovered only at an older age. “Since then, I’ve been able to skip my other fitness program, I just need a little strength training on the side,” he told Süddeutsche Zeitung.

However, the Hipster Grandpa said that he has always been into fashion. “In Hanover, where I grew up, we used to run around in miniskirts when the miniskirt was just coming out for men. With Roman sandals, too! But we quickly let that go. When I came to Kreuzberg over 30 years ago, I mainly dressed in black in the typical alternative look here – but always special with a personal twist.”

Günther said that he has always kept changing and so has his clothes. To him, it’s all about harmony between the inside and the outside.

Contrary to what you might think, he was never a stylist. “I would have liked that, yes. But I wasn’t someone who rebelled, I did what my parents told me to do.” Instead, Günther became a chef. “It was hard for me at first, but it was okay. A completely normal job.”

Source:  Bored Panda


Asparagus Festivals


One of the highlights of springtime in Germany is Spargelzeit, or Asparagus Season. This is no ordinary asparagus – this is white asparagus. Until the 19th century, white asparagus was planted exclusively for German royalty, thus earning it the name Königsgemüse, or royal vegetable (Königs: kings; gemüse: vegetable). Harvesting runs from early April and ends precisely on June 24th, the Christian feast day of St. John. The city of Schwetzingen claims to be the “Spargel Capital of the World” and hosts an annual Spargelfest. While multiple villages will host their own asparagus festival, if you find yourself hopelessly smitten with this delectable veggie, take a 136km scenic drive through Asparagus Country (Spargelland) on the Baden Asparagus Route.     

Variety of Asparagus

Asparagus Madness

The first asparagus harvest of the year in Germany, known as Spargelzeit, creates a frenzy of festivals, contests, and general madness. Plan a trip to Germany in April to experience this firsthand.https://e605a4ca5bd4b368ea359b57de45a665.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-37/html/container.html

White Asparagus

Backlim, Boonlim, Ravel, and Braunschweig have been bred for thick shoots, closed heads and a mild, non-bitter taste. White asparagus is harvested in Germany between April and June 24 of each year. The farmer hills up sand and compost over the rootstocks to blanch the shoots as they grow. Asparagus shoots can grow 2 to 3 inches per day in warm weather.

Green Asparagus

Reading, Giant, Palmetto, or Martha Washington have been bred with a lower anthocyanin (the purple pigment) content, which reduces bitterness. They are not as thick or as woody as white varieties and do not have to be peeled.

Violet Asparagus

Loved in some countries such as France, violet asparagus is considered inferior to white asparagus in Germany. The color develops when the white asparagus breaks through the dirt crust and light shine on it.

Purple Asparagus

Violetto d’Albenga and Purple Passion, bred for a nutty flavor, have up to 20% more sugar and less fiber than green asparagus. It is a new variety and not seen often in stores.

How White Asparagus Is Grown

Growing white asparagus is an intensive process that takes at least three years until the first harvest. Rootstocks (they are rhizomes, but commonly called roots) are set out in early winter and the plants allowed to grow and flower for two years. In the third year, the farmer mounds sand and compost over the rootstocks and hopes for a warm spring.

During harvest, workers go out every morning before sunup and pick asparagus by digging a small hole, sticking a sharp knife into the dirt, aiming for the base of the shoot, carefully pulling out the shoot and filling in the hole with sand using a trowel. Mechanization has not worked because a broken asparagus shoot has very little value. 

No matter which quality you choose, the asparagus should be fresh or you are throwing your money away. When selecting fresh asparagus, look for moist cut surfaces, stalks that can be dented with a fingernail and smell sweet, not sour.

Do not touch the asparagus at the German market, however, unless you want to be yelled at by the seller. Ask for a sample and find a seller you can trust by asking friends and relatives.

Germany steps up restrictions for EU countries amid COVID-19 surge

A sign helps passengers to find the COVID-19 test center at the airport in Frankfurt, Germany, Saturday, Aug. 8, 2020
A sign helps passengers to find the COVID-19 test center at the airport in Frankfurt, Germany, Saturday, Aug. 8, 2020 

Germany has increased border restrictions amid a new spike in coronavirus cases in the country.

From Friday, people coming from the Bulgarian regions of Blagoevgrad, Dobritch, and Varna, as well as travellers from Romania’s Argeș, Bihor, Buzău, Neamt, Ialomita, Mehedinti and Timis regions, and Australia’s Victoria state, will need to undergo quarantine or present a negative test upon arrival.

The measure follows equal restrictions announced from August 5 for travellers coming from the Belgian town of Antwerp, which accounts for around 70% of the country’s COVID-19 cases. Spanish residents from Catalonia, Navarra and Aragon were told to quarantine from July 31.

At the moment there are several dozens of countries to which this measure applies – mostly non-European – including the US.

This list is made of countries or areas which Germany’s disease control centre, the Robert Koch Insitute (RKI), considers as “high-risk”.

The RKI classifies a country or an area as “high-risk” when there are more than 50 new infections per 100,000 people over the last period of seven days.

Germany has offered to pay the coronavirus test for people entering the country from high-risk regions for the first three days of their arrival.

The country has recently battled to contain local outbreaks in various regions, and it recorded more than 1,000 new infections nationwide for the third day running on Saturday.

Germany’s reported over 216,000 coronavirus cases in total, and more than 9,000 related deaths.

Second COVID-19 wave has already hit Germany, warns doctor’s union :

Some countries think the second wave is here, while others think it is yet to arrive
Some countries think the second wave is here, while others think it is yet to arrive

Europe’s concerns of a coronavirus resurgence have been heightened again amid a warning that Germany has already entered a second wave of the virus, while France braces for worse to possibly come.

The head of Germany’s doctors’ union Susanne Johna told the Augsburger Allgemeine newspaper that she believes her country is currently undergoing “a second, shallow upswing” of COVID-19.

In the interview published Tuesday, Johna re-stressed the importance of adhering to social distancing rules to hold on to Germany’s early success in bringing the virus under control but warned a “long for normality” could hinder this process.

Distancing, hygiene and vigilant mask wearing all continue to be necessary to keep infection levels low, she said.

Johna’s comments come after a steady increase in the number of new cases of the virus reported in Germany — rising 879 on Tuesday to 211,281 in total. A further eight people died on the same day, bringing the country’s total to 9,156.

Germany’s total number of deaths is still much lower than other countries in Europe — such as France, Italy, Spain and the UK — and has been attributed to fast action at the start of the pandemic, along with widespread testing capabilities.

Coronavirus: German outbreak sparks fresh local lockdowns

Authorities hand out food supplies to quarantined employees of the Tönnies meatpacking plant
Authorities have sent supplies to the quarantined workers of the Tönnies meatpacking plant

German authorities in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia have reimposed lockdown restrictions in two districts after a spike in cases, with more than half a million people affected.

One area is home to a meatpacking plant where more than 1,500 workers have tested positive.

State premier Armin Laschet said the “preventative measures” in Gütersloh district would last until 30 June.

Neighbouring Warendorf district has also seen restrictions return.

The state’s health minister, Karl-Josef Laumann, announced the second lockdown just hours after the first, saying further measures were needed “in order to protect the population”.

It is the first time lockdowns have been reintroduced in Germany since the country began lifting nationwide restrictions in May.

Germany has been praised for its overall response to the pandemic, but there are fears infections are rising again.

Authorities in North Rhine-Westphalia had been among those strongly pushing Chancellor Angela Merkel to ease national restrictions in recent months.

What’s happening in North Rhine-Westphalia?

On Tuesday morning, Mr Laschet described the outbreak linked to the Tönnies meatpacking plant, south-west of the city of Gütersloh, as the “biggest infection incident” in the country. Just hours later, health minister Laumann announced that Warendorf would also reimpose restrictions.

In the two districts, bars, museums, cinemas and gyms must all close, and restaurants can only serve meals to take away. Stricter social distancing measures are also back in force, meaning people can only meet one person from outside their own household and it has to be in public.

Schools and nurseries have already been closed in Gütersloh, and those in Warendorf will shut their doors on Thursday.

Police guard residential buildings in Gutersloh
Police were sent to guard residential buildings for the plant’s employees

There is also a mandatory quarantine in place for all employees of the affected Tönnies plant. Three police units have been deployed to enforce the measures, accompanied by aid workers.

Authorities have put up metal fencing around residential buildings where plant staff live and are distributing food to more than 7,000 employees, many of whom are migrants. Translators are on hand to explain the situation.

All operations at the meatpacking site were suspended last Wednesday. A spokesman for the Tönnies Group apologised for the outbreak, though Mr Laschet on Tuesday accused the company of a lack of cooperation.

People are not barred from leaving the two areas under renewed lockdown, but Mr Laschet appealed for local residents “not to travel to other districts”.

What’s the overall situation in Germany?

Local authorities in Germany have the power to enforce different measures in their areas. Regulations differ from region to region.

This is not the only localised outbreak in the country. A tower block has been placed under quarantine in the central German city of Göttingen, and police were sent to maintain order on Saturday after some residents tried to get out.

Lothar Wieler, head of the nation’s public health body – the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) – told reporters on Tuesday the country was at risk of a second wave of infections but said he was optimistic that this could be prevented.

Currently the reproduction rate, or R-number – which indicates how many people one infected person will on average pass the virus on to – in Germany is estimated at 2.76.

The R number must be below one for infection rates to fall but authorities have stressed that outbreaks pushing up R remain localised.

BBC Berlin correspondent Damien McGuinness reports that as Germany’s overall infection rate is low, these sudden local outbreaks have a big impact on the national R number. In the past week, 140 local authorities have seen no new cases at all.

Other European countries are also seeing small outbreaks. On Monday the north-eastern Spanish region of Aragón reimposed stricter lockdown measures on about 68,000 residents of Huesca province.

Health minister Salvador Illa said officials were closely monitoring the situation and said it was “on its way to being under control”.

Source: BBC NEWS – 23 June 2020