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Verden

This lovely looking set of 4 issued in Verden depict historical events. I have seen it describes as an anti-semitic set though...........??

Verden4back

 

The three notes depicting the career of the pirate Störtebeker (25pf), the mass execution of pagan Saxons by Charlemagne (1m) and the legend of the Devil and the Stone Man (75pf) suggest nothing anti-Semitic at all.

 
The note showing the ducking of criminals (50pf) does show the same punishment being meted out to a Jew on the anti-semitic Brakel note, but in this case it is different.....
 
Firstly, the text doesn't suggest anti-semitism : "How back in the day in Verden the usurers and the profiteers were punished."(Verse in Low German) "Now what's all this to-do.? The people are all madly happy. The profiteers are drinking the water of the River Aller, and they still haven't filled their gullets."
Of course, in the Middle Ages money-lending at interest i.e. usury was the only profession allowed to the Jews, but from a 1920s perspective usury and profiteering were charges applied not exclusively to Jews but to any class enemies / scapegoats, whether Jew or Gentile. Just because those words are used here, doesn't make it anti-semitic.
 
Secondly, the image doesn't suggest anti-semitism : the silhouette profile of the male isn't the common racial stereotype, nor does he wear the traditional gabardine mantle or pointed medieval Judenhut (Jew's hat) which you might expect if a racist / racial point were being made.
 
Thirdly, this appears to be a historical series with stories and legends from Verden's past.  I can even trace the origin of the dunking to a medieval / early modern German practice of ducking people in a cage (rather than using the traditional English version of the ducking stool), and this for crimes against the local economy.  They have a ducking cage in the Torture Museum of Rothenburg ob der Tauber. The coloured print of "The Baker's Baptism on account of his loaves being too small", can be seen below..........an example of how trading in short weight i.e. profiteering was dealt with - again, no sign of anti-Semitism here.
 
dunking

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