Stafelter and “Doudeg Fra”

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Stafelter

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 The house of the Stafel­ter had been a much vis­it­ed leisure inn once.  Map of the restora­tion works

It is at the loca­tion « Stafel­ter » that you can find one of the rare build­ings in the Grünewald. The old­est indi­ca­tion of this house goes back to the year 1889 a doc­u­ment of the Admin­is­tra­tion of the Grand-Duke prop­er­ty. The house first served as dwelling for the for­est offi­cial of the Grand Duke and had been changed into a pub lat­er on. As for the ori­gin of the name “Stafel­ter”, sev­er­al expla­na­tions are cir­cu­lat­ing. At the cross­ing point of the trails stood once a kind of stone table, called “Staffel­stein” where juris­tic mat­ters were dis­cussed. But the name may also come from the word “Stapel­stein” mean­ing stone to pile up, as once mer­chan­dis­ing was done on these loca­tions (the old Roman road is not far from there) and the goods had prob­a­bly been piled up there.

”Doudeg Fra”

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The “Dead Woman”, prehistorical sanctuary of the Alma Mater?

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The “Dead Woman”, sanc­tu­ary of the roman god­dess Diana ?

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The “Dead Woman”, pre­his­tor­i­cal sanc­tu­ary of the Alma Mater, as a sym­bol for fer­til­i­ty?

The sit­u­a­tion of the “Dead woman” near springs and foun­tains, as well as the old tra­di­tion to offer branch­es along the old Roman and Celtic road, prob­a­bly allows rea­son­ing that this site had been a pre­his­toric sanc­tu­ary. These loca­tions were often pre­served for fol­low­ing civil­i­sa­tions as for exam­ple to wor­ship the roman gods or to erect a Chris­t­ian cru­ci­fix.

The crucifix

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Up to the mid­dle of the 20th cen­tu­ry a cru­ci­fix, erect­ed on sev­er­al stone blocks, stood here on this place. In 1982 it had been replaced by a new road cru­ci­fix show­ing, accord­ing to the old nation­al tra­di­tion the cru­ci­fix­ion scene.

The “Dead Woman” = Elisabeth of Görlitz ?

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King Wence­laus pledged the ter­ri­to­ry of Lux­em­bourg to Elis­a­beth of Gör­litz.

Anoth­er inter­pre­ta­tion of the “Dead Woman” may be that it rep­re­sents Elis­a­beth of Gör­litz (1391–1451). In 1388 King Wence­laus pledged the ter­ri­to­ry of Lux­em­bourg for his debts against his cousin Job­st of Moravia. After his death in 1409, his wid­ow Elis­a­beth of Gör­litz had been the only Pawnee of Lux­em­bourg. Dur­ing all the years of her reign, the princess had so many debts that she had to sell in 1441 Lux­em­bourg to the Duke Philippe of Bur­gundy.

Accord­ing to an old text issued by the Heiliggeist Monastery, this act of sale hap­pened pre­cise­ly at this loca­tion called “Dead Woman” and had been accom­plished by the old tra­di­tion of “hand hit­ting”. This old act wants that the sell­er holds a branch and a hand­ful of soil in his hand and that the buy­er has to make it fall down by hit­ting the seller’s hand.

Appar­ent­ly Elis­a­beth of Gör­litz said imme­di­ate­ly after the sale act “Now I am a dead woman”, the word “dead” of course has to be under­stood in the mean­ing of “done”, “inef­fec­tu­al” or “worth­less”. Accord­ing to passed down con­ven­tions, up from that day on branch­es were put on that place with the words “This is for the dead woman”.

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The Jesuit Church in Treves -The bur­ial place of Elis­a­beth of Gör­litz

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