We are familiar with many stereotypes about this nation: adherents of order, always serious and collected, the most punctual and hardworking. But it seems that there are many more facts that are worth learning and for which you can fall in love with this beautiful country.
Check out 13 interesting facts about Germany, a diverse and captivating country in the heart of Europe.
1. Germany, Deutschland, Alemania, Tyskland, Niemcy … so what is correct?
Depending on the language you speak, the land of the Teutons will have different names. But why?
As usual, history takes us back to the Roman Empire, when the belligerent, elegant Italians first arrived in Rhineland , in the west of the country. Depending on who they asked, different tribes in the territories around the lands of modern Germany gave their neighbors different names.
Among them were the «dumb», «neighbors» and «forest people» in the corresponding language of the time. Centuries later, despite some factual inaccuracies, most countries still adhere to the original guidelines. If, when you are there, you are in doubt, switch to German.
2. You will not be punished for jailbreak
Already in the 19th century, German law recognized the human desire for freedom as a «basic instinct» and decreed that jailbreak itself was not punishable . However, this law does not include crimes committed during the escape.
Read next: World’s Best Prison Hotels
3. «Sie liebt dich, yeah, yeah, yeah!»
Most music fans know that the career of the Liverpool quartet began in the early 1960s in Hamburg ‘s red-light district, Reeperbahn. Here the group spent their early years, rumored to be living behind a cinema curtain and washing urinals before three of them were deported for various reasons.
4. Germany — home of the world’s first diner
When, somewhere far away, the Inca empire had not even begun to grow, the first tavern had already opened in Regensburg , which today is called the Regensburg sausage kitchen (Wurstkuchl). This is the oldest tavern (fast food restaurant, if you will), which functions continuously. And it opened already in 1146!
The documented recipes for making a true sausage in this tavern date back only to the 1800s. However, the national devotion to sausages of more than a thousand varieties is undeniable.
Read next: Top 7 Gourmet Cities
5. They invented many things
In addition, many equally great inventions are usually credited with Germany. Among them, for example, book printing, brewing, car, bicycle, jet engine, zeppelin airship, insulin, aspirin, Gummy Bears and kindergarten. Contact lenses can also complete this list. Marburg- born ophthalmologist Adolf Eugene Fick invented an alternative to spectacles in 1888 — the first optical lenses.
6. Broadcast everything online … but not in this country
What could be more sobering than a discerning gaze in the mirror after a few days at Oktoberfest? A journey down the rabbit hole of German YouTube, of course.
Despite the efforts of German music lovers, 61% of the top 1000 YouTube videos were banned on the German thread of the site. And although the real reason is not officially known, suspicions fall on the German organization for the rights of performers (GEMA) and copyright claims. No matter who is behind this ban, it is important that it will not become a sensation on the online cover scene in Germany.
7. Born in the USA? Hardly …
Bavarian- born Loeb Strauss emigrated to the United States at 18. There, the famous creator of the titular American jeans changed his name to Levi and defended a patent for the use of rivets in the areas of greatest wear of work trousers. As a result of the California gold rush, this decision resulted in an unprecedented jackpot.
Like the Strauss family, the families of the children’s writer Judith Kerr and the painter Lucien Freud, made a similar pilgrimage and eventually moved to England. Later, Kerr and Freud became idols of British culture.
8. A Christmas tree was born in the forest, it grew in the forest
A topic for lively debate: the exact origin of the Yule tradition remains unknown and is attributed, among others, to the 16th century Protestant reformer Martin Luther. Most agree that the tradition originated in Germany.
It’s just a matter of time before people start adding a dash of danger to their celebrations. The Germans, for example, began decorating fragrant, succulent Christmas trees with burning candles and edible toys, and the tradition soon spread throughout the world. Most cultures still refrain from using real candles, leaving a small group of traditionalists in Germany and several other European countries in danger of meeting Christmas Eve in an all-consuming hellfire.
Read next: Christmas traditions from around the world
9. Everyone often forgets about the enchanting beauty of nature in Germany
Incredible but true: Germany’s nature is becoming a clear omission on the list of wonders. After stereotypical portrayal of green alpine meadows and dense forests of the former Bohemia, it’s easy to forget that there are other awe-inspiring natural landscapes in Germany.
Saxon Switzerland National Park is just one of the wonders. Towering over the park, the Bastel Bridge overlooking the Elbe River and the majestic monoliths that give odds to their red counterparts from the Monument Valley are already worth a visit.
10. They are crazy football fans
Last year, the Germans won the FIFA World Cup with a team dubbed as the best national team that ever existed . German football fans have good days.
The Bundesliga, Germany’s national league, boasts the highest average match attendance in Europe. Tickets cost about 1,000 — 2,500 rubles, which is relatively inexpensive given the class of clubs playing and the convenience of the stadiums. Even the British, inveterate patriots of national football, can often be found in the famous «yellow wall» of Borussia Dortmund fans, dressed in the home colors of their club.
11. Brotherly love? Until sports do us part …
The city of Herzogenaurach , Middle Franconia, has given birth to such global sports giants as Adidas and Puma. By the way, the companies were founded by two brothers.
Having quarreled over allegedly false accusations of treason during World War II, the Dassler brothers never made up. Both went on to build global sporting goods empires. Do you still think that competition between siblings is high in your family?
12. Beer? Only pure as a baby’s tear!
The Germans play by the rules. That is why you will not find a German beer brewed not according to the canons of the Reinheitsgebot , the law of the purity of the production of a hoppy drink.
While their love of the intoxicated drink is undeniable, according to polls, Germans, to everyone’s surprise, are only in second place among the countries with the highest annual beer consumption per capita . The championship is confidently held by the Czech Republic.
Read next: Top 10 facts about Oktoberfest
13. They invented magazines!
By inventing printing, the Germans probably felt responsible for the first published magazine . In 1663, Hamburg’s Erbauliche Monaths Unterredungen (Instructive Monthly Discussions) became the world’s first regularly published journal. Germany is still considered the birthplace of one of the most thriving magazine industries in the world, so pick up a couple to read on the plane.