The Coolest Legends in Freiburg im Breisgau

What to See if You Like the Unusual

Freiburg im Breisgau is a beautiful, historical and yet chic modern city located in Southern Germany near both Switzerland and France. While this spot is absolutely hip, artistic, and modern, filled with university students ready to fight for sustainability and the future of the world, it also contains a unique and rich history all its own. And, of course, with that rich history comes a handful of unique traditions, strange monuments, and cool legends. So, naturally, when I visited Freiburg im Breisgau, I learned about all the unique, weird, and cool stories that make Freiburg special. Let’s talk about my favorite legends and aspects of Freiburg im Breisgau that I just can’t wait to share with you!

The Mooning Gargoyle

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When you look up from under the towering structure of the Freiburger Münster in Freiburg im Breisgau, you will see a plethora of Gargoyles looming over your head. Most of them are traditionally what you would expect. One, in particular, however, is not. If you look closely, you will find a Gargoyle facing his butt to you, mooning you, if you will. He’s the only one like it, and he is a rather comical sight to behold on such a beautiful structure.

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There are multiple stories that go with this strange statue. One states that the stone mason wasn’t paid for his work, so he placed the Gargoyle to moon the City Council building. Another claims that he was in love with a wealthy woman who lived in a home next to the church. When her father declined his marriage proposal, he positioned the gargoyle to moon her home. The other states that it’s the result of pent-up religious frustration after the church denomination was changed (as these areas of Germany were generally protestant yet forced into Catholic rule for a time). Whatever the case, it sure does provide a good laugh for unsuspecting tourists. It’s most definitely worth the look to see the Mooning Gargoyle of Freiburg im Breisgau for yourself.

Freiburg Bächle and Their Legend

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Throughout Freiburg, you will find these tiny little canals that bring water from the nearby river down throughout the city. They were incredibly practical when they were built back in the 1200s, yet now, they are more charming and pretty that anything else. You will see merchants selling little boats for children to pull down the canals, you may see a puppy or two splash down them as they go about their walks, and you may even see people stick their feet in them on warm days. These structures were threatened to be removed in the 70s, but people protested, so they stayed. After all, they are a huge part of the personality of Freiburg. What makes them so unique, however, is the rumor that comes with them. It is said that if you aren’t watching where you are going and you fall into one of the little canals, you will marry a person from Freiburg. So, when you visit Freiburg, watch where you’re going! Or, if you’re looking for love, maybe think about stumbling into a canal.

The Hang Man

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While touring through Freiburg im Breisgau, it’s likely you’ll find a little alley with vines draped over the top of it as you go through the heart of the town. I stumbled across it and through it many times on my journey. In this alley, you’ll find a green building (which now looks like a store front). This, however, used to be the home of the Hang Man ie the executioner of the town.

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Being the executioner, the man who lived there was said to have bad luck. It was said that no one would want to marry him or be friendly with him at all, so he would have to look to a neighboring town to wed or even to find friends. Now, to commemorate him, there is a black cat painted on the building and the mosaic of a black cat in the street in front of his old home. In Freiburg, you will find many mosaics outside the different buildings to commemorate the establishments within. His, however, is the most unique of them all.

Bread Markings

One of the strangest and coolest things I saw throughout my travels in Germany was the standards of measurement carved into the sides of the churches, the largest and most prominent of which was in Freiburg. The markets were (and are) conducted right outside the church, so the towns would draw the standard size of the bread on the exterior church walls so you could file a complaint against someone if they tried to sell you bread that was too small. Some of the earliest dates we saw went back to the 13th century! You could purchase a loaf of bread and compare it to the standard on the side of the church. In Freiburg, specifically, it was the loaves of bread that stood out.

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If you visit Heidelberg, they had similar measurements but with pretzels! And you can note the imperial symbol, the crown, over the pretzel to see the authenticity of the measurement. It was said if you were proven to be cheated by getting sold something too small, the baker would be punished by being locked in a cage and dunked in the lake.

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All in all, Freiburg was a hip, artistic, modern, and yet somehow still classic city in Germany that stole my heart completely. It is a fantastic place to visit. There is so much to see, and when you take your time touring through it, I hope you’ll also check out these strange and unusual accents to the town.

Malorie Mackey is an actress, published author, and adventurer. Malorie grew up in Richmond, Virginia where she loved sports, the outdoors, animals, and all forms of art. She took to acting at a young age, so it was no surprise when she decided to go to college for theatre. While in college, Malorie studied body movement with the DAH Theatre in Belgrade, Serbia, voice in Herefordshire, England with Frankie Armstrong, and the business of theatre in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Malorie moved from the East Coast to Los Angeles after receiving her BFA in Theatre Performance from Virginia Commonwealth University. Upon arriving in LA, Malorie participated in the Miss California USA 2011 Pageant where she won the “Friend’s Choice” Award (by popular vote) and received a beautiful award for it.

While living on the West Coast, Malorie accumulated over 40 acting credits working on a variety of television shows, web series, and indie films, such as the sci-fi movie “Dracano,” the Biography Channel show “My Haunted House,” the tv pilot “Model Citizen” with Angie Everhart, and the award-winning indie film “Amelia 2.0.”

Throughout her experiences, Malorie found a love for travel and adventure, having journeyed to over a dozen countries experiencing unique locations. From the lush jungles of the Sierra Madre mountain range to the Arctic Circle in Finnish Lapland, Malorie began adventuring and writing about her unique travels. These travel excerpts can be found on VIVA GLAM Magazine, in Malorie’s Adventure Blog, in Malorie’s adventure show: “Weird World Adventures” and in the works for her full-length travel book.

In 2022, Malorie was thrilled to become a member of the Explorer’s Club through her work on scientific travel. Her experiences volunteering on archaeological and anthropological expeditions as well as with animal conservation allowed her entry into the exclusive club. Since then, Malorie has focused more on scientific travel.

Malorie’s show “Weird World Adventures” releases on Amazon Prime Video in the Spring of 2024! Stay tuned as Malorie brings the strangest wonders of the world to you!

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