Where on the world you can find dragons and princesses?
First you perhaps have in your family but the second one is very rare in our
times. Not in Bavaria, there is one place, every year a brave man has to risk
his life to save a princess from a dragon. And they have nice princesses there.
You will see that? Ok, let's go to Furth in the Forest.
There are a lot of well known forests in Germany, one example
even in music is the Black Forest. But we are going today in the Bavarian Forest
near the border to the Czech Republic, where the Bohemian Forest begins. Furth
im Wald, so the German name I will use now, is a really old border town
between Germany and the eastern neighbourhood.
Since 1990 the Iron Wall is fallen and our visit today leads
us just between Munich and Prag. You can reach Furth im Wald by daily
train connections or easier, drive with me or my partners over historical roads
to that lovely place.
This area and the town needs more than an one-day-trip,
there are so many things to hear, to see and to discover, you will hear. All
seasons of a year are nice and different, naturally, but in august, from the
11th till 21th, you should have been there when the dragon comes But be not
afraid, the terribly beast never won since 500 years, always one brave man
defend this lovely landscape and the princess owing it. I guess, you know now,
that I talk about a great cultural event pulling over centuries thousands of
people in that town Furth im Wald. This folk theatre based on historical
roots and legends from the Middle Ages.
A dragon was mostly, some countries in the world may think
perhaps otherwise, the sign of the evil. Old legends told us about huge beasts
looking like worms blowing fire out of the nose and so on.
In the eyes of simple people long raids of troops are similar
looking and so it was a long time in the area of Furth im Wald too.
This small town had seen thousands of soldiers running over the border to Bohemia
and back. The death was in earlier times a steady citizen of that town and
after the Bohemian reformer Jan Hus was sentenced to death in 1415, the torch
of destroy was burning everywhere. In 1431 the imperial army lead by Cardinal
Julian Caesarini was beaten devastatingly. In single scattered groups, the
commanders reached the small town Furth im Wald where the people were
searching for shelter and protection after having fled from the "dragon".
The next years saw the Plague as a not invited guest in town.
So you can believe that the alive stayed had a hard time
especially the traders on that old main street avoided the contaminated area.
But the forest people were clever. In all centuries before they always built
up their damaged town like an phoenix coming out of the ashes and after the
told last desasters they found another way. They editet a play about the fight
between the evil and the good and on this way they pulled from near and far
all the others curious about the new event in that town. So the traders came
again and Furth im Wald grew up. Even in our hurry-up-times this 500
years old event is really a must to see and a big fun, believe me.
Beside of that great cultural event the whole area is rich
of interesting things vacationeers are looking for. One main thing in holydays
is normally to test other and hopely good food. In this case you are just in
the middle of two famous kitchens, on one side the bavarian one and on the
other side the bohemian kitchen. Who never before has eaten bohemian dumplings
with plums inside he miss an unforgettable pleasure for tongue and stomache.
Because the border to the Czech Republic is not far, the dishes offers both,
bavarian and bohemian. And also the true roots of the Budweiser or Pilsener
beer are neer so they offer these too.
An old German word says "after a good meal there is
a choice of twice - either sleep or walk" . For sleeping the landscape
is to nice. Soft hills up to the mountains of the High-Bow, marvellous ways
through the nature park woods, bike lanes, a paradise for fishermen, bathing
in natural lakes or pools, tennis courts, an 18-hole-golf court, a underwater-fish-watching
station, a small zoo where kids can touch the animals of the area and lot more
will keep you busy so you can eat like a wulf but not getting fat.
Furth im Wald is a lovely town, even in winter times,
they have all skiing possibilities and a real old bavarian use - icestick shooting.
Actual one website is too short to show or tell all important things about
this excellent place for vacation - you should try it. The people in that area
are very nice and practice over centuries hospitality, you will see if you
contact their tourist
information. Like the town and the hearts are open for guests so the mind
there is also open for new things, take a look on their own homepages - the
town Furth im Wald
or the slaughter of the dragon.
At last for them who like it two tales from that area. Both
have historical roots, let's start first with the documented one. In 1347 old
papers prove that one german army leader named Peter von Egg was beheaded in
case of cowardice in war. The folks told the story in that way:
Peter von Egg
Peter Eckher von Eck was a church prince of Straubing
and as the Bohemian king Karl was invading the district of the Bavarian Forest
killing, burning, robbing and raping with a big army he sent his own son with
a strong army against him. His son was also named Peter like the use was in
the old times.
The son was proud about that order, he was really hot
to fight against the Bohemians for the glory of his family name and the country.
But his wife was very sad about and tried to keep him
away from that fight because she was a member of one old Bohemian aristocracy
and she knew that her brother was fighting in the invading army. She was not
successfull to keep her husband Peter at home but he promised her at least
that he would not kill her brother.
At Furth im Wald the armies met together. The Bavarians
are fighting like devils, especially the young Peter von Egg was like a lion.
But suddenly, in the middle of the hardest fights, his brother attacked him.
As Peter saw the heraldic figure of his wifes family on the shield from that
fighter running against him something touched his mind. His arm with the sword
sank down and he seemed to hear his crying wife, an unvisible arm turned his
horse and he flew. As his army saw the leader going back they all give up and
so the Bohemians won the battle.
As his father was told what has happened he raged up
like a wounded lion. He gave order his son should be bounded in chains and
then he judged him to death by the executioner. His son begged him, not for
his life only to give him not such a shame, he begged for another chance to
die in a battle but his father denied it. So Peter von Egg, junior,
was executed on Saint Coloman's day 1347 in Straubing.
The other story was told in the ancient times mostly from
people going home at midnight. Perhaps they had sometimes one beer to much
but you never know what's true or not. There are so much things between earth
and heaven and maybe ...
The headless white horse
Once upon a time a robber baron from Bohemia was captured
and brought to the castle of Furth im Wald to court. Because he was so evil
they punished to death by starving. Just as they wanted to throw him in the
deepest jail under the tower he freed himself and jump on his white horse standing
also in the castle's yard. The brave animal speeded in direction of the gate
and freedom but the gate guard was very smart. You must know, in the old times
they had gates or doors like we have but in addition they had iron gates falling
down too. This gate guard cutted the rope which was used to pull up the additional
falling gate, the gate smashed down and deheaded the brave horse. So the robber
baron was thrown in the jail and died there.
Long times after that happened a headless white horse
with a baron's figure was seen in Furth mostly and only at midnight. Several
years later the figure was disappeared, the horse alone was to see. People
believed that prayers had solved the soul of the baron but nobody had prayed
for the brave animal.
Script by J.W.Lohfink, for any mistakes in
spell or grammar I apologize as a precaution, corrections, questions or comments
mail to me.
>> German version
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