Schwibbogen from the Rothenburg Christmas Workshop®
The name “Schwibbogen” originated from one of its architectural features, the suspension arch, which acts as a supporting arch between two walls. It is said that the miner and blacksmith, Johann Teller from Johanngeorgenstadt, created the first wrought iron Schwibbogen candleholder in 1726. Once again, it was a miner’s model that was the inspiration for the design.
In the winter months, during their 10 to 12 hour shifts underground, the miners yearned for light. On Christmas Eve, the traditional miners’ “Mettenschicht” was held during the last work shift. At that time, miners hung their lanterns on the wall in a horseshoe shape, symbolizing the entrance to the mine. This custom is said to have been the inspiration for the Schwibbogen.
Miners began to carve arches out of wood for their homes and placed domestic figures beneath them, thereby creating the first Schwibbogen. Although the styling and detailing of these artistic works has advanced through the years, today’s Schwibbogen are still very similar to the earlier models, generating the same dazzling effects as in the miner’s day.
You can find the Schwibbogen from the Rothenburg Christmas Workshop in our Onlineshop.
© Käthe Wohlfahrt GmbH & Co. OHG - 2014