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The History of Pretzels
by Dr. Brad Black 
02/02/14
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The History of Pretzels This is the other blog idea from my family, but it is not only about Christmas, so I will place it here. As early as 610 A.D. in southern France and northern Italy they were making pretzels. They were made from the left over dough from the bread that monks were making. The monks would take the dough and make little strips and then fold it in a special shape. The shape was to represent arms of a child in prayer. The three holes represent the Trinity, the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. The monks used these little treats to give to good little children who memorized their Bible verses. The monks called them Pretiola, which in Latin means little reward. In Italy the called them Brachoila, which means little arms. The little treats made their way all over Europe and finally to Germany where they were called Bretzels, or modern day Pretzels. In the 1600’s in Germany, the pretzels were traditionally eaten during the Good Friday supper. The Catholic Church had a lot to do with this because they said the pretzel was religiously significant because of its shape and ingredients. The shape we already talked about, as for the ingredients, pretzels are made with simple ingredients of just flour and water. During that time in Europe, Catholic people were not allowed to eat eggs, lard, or dairy products during the Lenten season. As time passed, on Easter morning they would hide pretzels to be found by children, some say this is the precursor to the modern day practice of hiding eggs. Because of the shape and the holes representing the Holy Trinity, pretzels were thought to bring luck to people. Later, pretzels at weddings become a tradition for their good luck and the phrase “tying the knot” came from this. The idea was that the marriage was tying the two prominent families together. In this idea, the two large loops were to represent everlasting love because of the resemblance to a heart. Now when you eat a pretzel, you can have a reminder of the Holy Trinity and thank God for your food.



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