The Oldest Brezel Ever Found Posted by Sten on Oct 31, 2016 in Culture, Food, Language
Who doesn’t know them? Brezel (pretzels) are known worldwide mostly as a Bavarian delicacy. The salty dough product is super popular throughout Germany. As it turns out now, not only its taste is superb, but also its best before date… How old is that oldest pretzel? Read on to find out!
Where does the word Brezel even come from?
The word Brezel is not a common German word, nor is it similar to any other particular German word. It actually originates from the Latin word brachium. Through the years, this transformed into brezzila and then into Brezel. The Latin word brachium means “arm”: The ends of the Brezel are crossed like arms. Makes sense!
The oldest Brezel in the world
Last year, Archeologen (archaeologists) from Regensburg (just below Nuremberg) found some very old Backware (baked goods). They found the remains of a Semmel, a Hörnchen (croissant) and a Brezel on the Grabungsstätte (archaeological site) Donaumarkt (Danube Market). Against all odds, the salty Brotzeit (snack) managed to survive for over 250 years. How?
The Backwaren were apparently verkohlt (burnt) and so the 18th century Bäcker (baker) threw them away into a Abfallgrube (waste pit). This Grube was later overbuilt, and that is why the Brotzeit survived. It is now on display in the Historisches Museum von Regensburg (The Regensburg Museum of History).
Of course, this is the oldest Brezel found – but the Brezel has existed long before that. So it might just be that there are even older preserved ones! After all, the oldest Brot (bread) ever found is almost 6,000 years old, found in Switzerland. Nevertheless, this is an important Fund (find), because it reveals something about daily life at the time.
Would you like to see the Brezel on display? Do you like Brezel? Have there been astonishing cultural finds in your area? Let me know in the comment section below!
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