Aspekte – Die Kultursendung im ZDF – Das Saarl…

Aspekte – Die Kultursendung im ZDF – Das Saarland

45 min docu in German on the Saarland, 1 of Germany’s 16 Federal States, located in the Southwest in the border region with France.
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Linguistic map of Old High German (Alemannic &…

Linguistic map of Old High German (Alemannic & Bavarian), Old Frankish, Old Saxon, and Old Frisian at the time of Otto I, 10th century

Die deutschen Stämme (German tribes)

The derivation of the German people from a number of German tribes (Deutsche Stämme; Volksstämme) developed in 18th to 19th century German historiography and ethnography. This concept of „stems" relates to the early and high medieval period and is to be distinguished from the more generic Germanic tribes of Late Antiquity. A distinction was sometimes made between the “ancient stems” (Altstämme) in existence in the 10th century, and “recent stems” (Neustämme), which emerged in the high medieval period due to eastward expansion. The delineation of the 2 concepts is necessarily vague and has a history of academic dispute. The terms Stamm, Nation or Volk variously used in modern German historiography reflect the Middle Latin gens, natio or populus of the medieval source material.

Traditional German historiography counts 6 Altstämme (ancient stems) – Bavarians, Swabians (Alamanni), Franks, Saxons, Frisians, and Thuringians. All of these were incorporated in the Carolingian Empire by the late 8th century. Only 4 of them are represented in the later stem duchies; the former Merovingian duchy of Thuringia was absorbed into Saxony in 908 while the former Frisian kingdom had been conquered into Francia in 734. The customary or tribal laws of these groups were recorded in the early medieval period. Franconian, Saxon, and Swabian law remained in force and competed with imperial law well into the 13th century.

The list of “recent stems” (Neustämme) is much less definite and subject to considerable variation; groups that have been listed under this heading include the Märker, Lausitzer, Mecklenburger, Upper Saxons, Pomeranians, Silesians, and East Prussians, roughly reflecting German settlement activity from the 12th-15th centuries.

The use of Stämme (tribes) rather than Völker (nations, peoples) emerged in the 1800s in the context of the project of German unification. This terminology is reflected in the preamble of the Weimar constitution of 1919, reading „Das deutsche Volk, einig in seinen Stämmen“ (The German nation (people), united in its tribes). The division remains in current use in the conventional classification of German dialects into Franconian, Alemannic, Thuringian, Bavarian, and Low Saxon (including Friso-Saxon, with Frisian proper being regarded as a separate language). In the Free State of Bavaria, the division into “Bavarian stems” (bayerische Stämme) remains current for the populations of Altbayern (Bavaria proper), Franconia, and Swabia. Read more:

This is Helgoland, a small German archipelago …

This is Helgoland, a small German archipelago in the Nordsee (North Sea). The islands were once Danish and later British possessions. Population in 2016: 1,127. They are the only German islands not in the immediate vicinity of the mainland, about 70 km by sea from Cuxhaven. During the period of British possession, the lyrics to the “Deutschlandlied", which later became the national anthem, were written on one of the islands by August Heinrich Hoffmann in 1841, while he was vacationing there. In addition to German, the local population, who are ethnic Frisians, speak the Heligolandic dialect of the North Frisian language called Halunder. Heligoland used to be called Heyligeland, or “holy land”, possibly due to the island’s long association with the god Forseti – the god of justice and reconciliation in Norse mythology as associated with the Frisians.

Das Schloss Nymphenburg is a Baroque palace in…

Das Schloss Nymphenburg is a Baroque palace in München (Munich), Bayern, Southern Germany. It was the main summer residence of the rulers of the House of Wittelsbach. The central pavilion was completed in 1675; the palace was gradually expanded and transformed over time. For a long time, it was the favorite summer residence of the rulers of Bavaria. King Max I Joseph died there in 1825; his great-grandson King Ludwig II was born there in 1845. In 1863, the only meeting between Ludwig and Otto von Bismarck took place there, although they remained connected in a lifelong friendship.

Today, Nymphenburg is open to the public and also continues to be a home for the head of the House of Wittelsbach, Franz, Duke of Bavaria. To the Jacobites, who trace the line of legitimate British monarchy down through the legal heirs of James II of England, the head of the House of Wittelsbach is the legitimate heir of the Stuart claims to the thrones of England, Scotland, France, and Ireland; this claim is however not being actively pursued.

The Holy Roman Empire, circa 1000 Ein Stammhe…

The Holy Roman Empire, circa 1000

Ein Stammherzogtum (stem duchy, as in „Stamm“ for tribe in reference to the Germanic tribes of the Franks, Saxons, Bavarians & Swabians) was a constituent duchy of the Kingdom of Germany at the time of the extinction of the Carolingian dynasty (the death of Louis the Child in 911), and the transitional period leading to the formation of the Holy Roman Empire later in the 10th century.

The Carolingians had dissolved the original tribal duchies of the Frankish Empire in the 8th century. As the Carolingian Empire declined, the old tribal areas assumed new identities as the subdivisions of the realm. The 5 stem duchies are: Bavaria, Franconia, Lotharingia, Saxony, and Swabia/Alemannia. They were retained as the major divisions of Germany under the Salian dynasty, and became increasingly obsolete during the early high medieval period under the Hohenstaufen dynasty. They were finally abolished in 1180 by Frederick Barbarossa in favour of more numerous territorial duchies.

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Regional German Food: Pickert. It’s a flat, fried or baked…

Regional German Food: Pickert. It’s a flat, fried or baked potato dish from Nordrhein-Westfalen, Northwestern Germany, featuring something between a flattened dumpling and a pancake. It comes as a Pfannenpickert the size of a pan, a rectangular Kastenpickert, or a palm-sized regular Pickert. The main ingredients are grated potatoes, flour, milk, eggs, yeast, salt, sugar, oil, and often raisins. 3 large potatoes produce 10–15 palm-sized pickerts, enough for 4–5 people.

They’re a specialty of the district of Lippe, where they developed from a traditional meal for the poorer people. In times past, they were eaten as breakfast or lunch by farmers, too, being a cheap but very nourishing dish, as would be required of food for a day’s work in the fields. They are now served spread with sugar beet syrup, butter, plum jam or Leberwurst (liver sausage). A related dish, Lappenpickert, is found in the regions towards Münster and the Ruhr Area. It does not usually contain raisins and yeast, but may have a dash of sweet cream added. There, it’s usually baked in rather thin pancakes on a griddle greased with a side of lard, and eaten with the same spreads as the Lippe Pickerts, or with smoked fish or cold cuts of meat.