German Easter Fountains- a German Easter Tradition
One way towns in Germany prepare for Easter is by decorating fountains. These German Easter Fountains are covered with flowers and colored eggs, making them a festive centerpiece to the city center square. Some places get wildly creative with arches and bundles of plastic hanging eggs. Other towns are more conservative with mostly container plants strung with a few delicate hand painted eggs and ribbon.
History of Decorating an Easter Fountain in Germany
In parts of Germany, there was a tradition of drawing Easter Water (Osterwasser) for health and purification. Sprinkling it on the eyes was good for eyesight, and Farmers would give it to their animals to stay healthy. The Catholic church would collect Easter Water to use in the baptismal font for the rest of the year. In Pomerania Easter Water meant Life and Fertility, and unmarried women would go to collect some before the sun came up… if she could sprinkle it onto the man she loved, there could be a wedding soon.
To honor the water, the giver of life, people would clean the wells in Springtime, to keep the water source clean.
The modern tradition behind the decorated fountains only goes back to the early 1900s. In 1909 the first Easter Fountain was decorated in Aufsess in Upper Franconia (Northern Bavaria). The idea spread, and in just a few years, fountains all around Franconia were being decorated. Over time, it became customary to decorate wells all over Germany with ribbons, flowers and eggs. Unfortunately, the onset of WWII put a halt to the tradition.
Fortunately, the 1980’s the idea of decorating an Easter Fountain gained traction again. The idea was to tie it in to the tourist industry, and it worked. BUSLOADS of tourists traveled to see the decorated fountains. And the custom is spreading throughout Germany. Today, wells are decorated with evergreen branches, flowers, paper ribbons, and plastic eggs (to combat vandalism and hold up to the elements).
Take a look at these beautiful German Easter Fountains
Freiberg am Neckar
Osterbrunnen in Teuchatz By Immanuel Giel – Own work, Public Domain
Schloßberg, Oberstadion, Land Baden-Württemberg, Germany
Bierosterbrunnen – Beer Easter Fountain Kleingesee Germany
Easter Fountain Dorfkirche Kornwestheim photo by Richard Schanz
Osterbrunnen Faurndau, Göppingen, Germany photo by Helmut Oechsle
You can see… many people enjoy visiting these beautiful Easter Fountains.
More Beautiful German Easter Fountains
Love Seeing these German Easter Fountains? Maybe want to Try making an Easter Fountain in your Hometown?
You can find more photos in these Books.
Fränkische Osterbrunnen: Bilder mit Text (German Edition)Osterbrunnen – Ausbreitung eines oberfränkischen BrauchtumsOsterbrunnen in der Frankischen Schweiz: Schwerpunkt und Ausweitung eines Brauchs (German Edition)Fränkische Osterbrunnen
Some are plastic eggs indeed, but most are still real blown out and intricately painted chicken, duck, and goose eggs, sometimes even ostrich eggs. They just have to be varnished correctly.