Schwerin's Ghost: Petermännchen

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Schwerin, Germany

Schwerin's Ghost: Petermännchen Reviews

Kathrin_E Kathrin_E
285 reviews
Schwerin's Ghost: Petermännchen Jun 26, 2009
Every old castle or palace needs a ghost on duty and of course Schwerin has one, too...

Petermännchen is a well-meaning but dangerous-looking little goblin who lives in the huge cellar vaults underneath Schwerin palace. He rewards the honest and the good but chases away burglars and intruders. He used to wake soldiers who fell asleep during night watch by rattling his keys to save them from punishment.

The legend tells that the island where the palace is now standing used to be the temple of a pagan god. When christianity arrived the pagan god fled into the depths of the ocean and his servants followed him. Only one remained.

Petermännchen appears in different shapes and outfis, for example as an old man in a long black robe, or as a medieval knight, or a rider with a big moustache. He often changed the colour of his clothing: under normal circumstances he was wearing a grey garment, a red one if war was due, black if someone had died.

The picture of the ghost has been adopted by Schwerin's tourist office - the figure in the photo is put up at the tourist information in Marktplatz. They sell Petermännchen souvenirs and you can even do a guided tour of the old town with him. The Pfaffenteich ferry has been named aftern him.
Schwerin's ghost: the infamous Pet…
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photo by: Kathrin_E