Bilingualism - Sorbian culture
When visiting this region please keep in mind that this is where the Sorbs, the slavic minority in Germany, live. The region around the abbey St. Marienstern is predominantly catholic, another minority in Saxony.
The Sorbs are an officially recognised minority, their culture including use of language in daily life are constitutionally guaranteed. This includes the right to speak their language at court or in administrative matters. Since the Sorbian language is quite close to Polish (more) and Czech (less) this might be helpful for you in case you are from one of those countries and get a fine by the police or so :-) The Sorbs speak German, of course, too.
Most interesting for tourists are their local customs, though. This includes special traditions around Easter holidays, like Easter egg decorations and Easter horse riding processions (highly recommended) and "Vogelhochzeit" (the marriage of birds) in January.
One of the sons of the village, Jakub Bart (1856 - 1909, Ćišinski is a pseudonym and means "the quiet") became a catholic priest and one of the leading writers in Sorbian language. He is best known for his sonnets, ballads and poems. He was forced to spend many years outside the Sorbian region (Dresden, Chemnitz) but fought for the rights of the Sorbian minority in regards to culture/language. In 1903 he got an early retirement from the catholic church and returned to Panschwitz-Kuckau.
There is a monument for him in the Lippe Park (pic 1), you can also see the house where he lived in the years after retirement (at the main street, pics 2 and 3), and the school in the village, where you also find a small museum commemorating him, is named after Ćišinski (pic 4).
- Arts and Culture
- Museum Visits