Krampusnacht is celebrated on the 5th of December. The Krampus is St. Nick's evil horned side kick known in France as Père Fouettard, the black haired dirty butcher, whom offer up punishment for bad children (and house wives) with tales ranging from simple flogging to cannibalism! On the Eve of St. Nikolaus Day, when a legendary bishop returns to visit to earth, he arrives bearing gifts and his big book of sins but he is joined by his companion Krampus.
A Krampusnacht Parade in Germany
Saint Nikolaus travels door to door doling out gifts to boys and girls who have been good all year, and those who have been bad will be dealt with by the Krampus. Disobedient children will awake to find shakes and slivers in their shoes, switches and parental spankings. Then a visit by the Krampus -St. Nikolaus's dark servant - a hairy, horned, supernatural beast with pointed ears and a long slithering tongue who will terrorize the bad until they promise to be good.
In the hands of the Krampus, even the most unruly child would promise to turn from their wicked ways.
In 17th century Europe, St. Nikolaus traveled with an array of somewhat unsavory servants, known as Zwarte Piet, Buzebercht, Knecht Ruprecht, Krampus, and Black Peter to name a few.
Have a look at the Krampus cards at this site, this was quite an industry!
During World War II, It appears Krampus shamefully pandered to the Nazis in postcards, doing a series of propaganda appearances in which he trounced and embarrassed British and French citizens and soldiers. So after WWII, it was rumored that Krampus had fled to Brazil and took part in an evil cloning scheme, but National Buffoon investigators failed to confirm those reports.
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