The Meierblis is a centuries-old tradition still celebrated on Texel and some other places in the Netherlands and Germany. Bonfires are lit on 30 April to welcome spring and celebrate the farewell of winter, or chase away winter spirits.
The name Meierblis comes from the word 'meier', meaning 'May', and 'blis', meaning 'fire'. The history of the Meierblis goes back to the time of the Germanic people. They believed that lighting fires in holy places favoured the gods and made the land fertile. In the Middle Ages, the festival was linked to Christian Pentecost. Large fires were lit on the Saturday before Pentecost to drive out the devil and celebrate the coming of the Holy Spirit.
Two weeks before the Meierblis, communal and private bonfires may be built. The pile consists of prunings and all kinds of untreated wood. Each village has a communal fire.
Around 19:00, the stacks are lit. Around them, people have their own small fires, over which marshmellows and buns are smoked. Children make sooty smudges on each other's faces. It is a celebration that appeals to both young and old and brings many people together every year. Anyone lucky enough to experience the Meierblis once will not soon forget it. It is a unique experience that you should definitely take part in!
The communal Meierblis are at the following locations:
Source locations: Municipality of Texel
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