Fri, Dec 21, 2007 - Page 20 News List

Where do gingerbread houses come from? 薑餅屋的由來

A gingerbread house in the Breeze Center, Taipei, Dec.19 2007.


Have you ever seen a gingerbread house? Do you know where gingerbread houses come from?

Gingerbread is like a soft cookie and is made using spices. It was very popular all over Europe in the Middle Ages. It was especially popular in Germany because Germany used to be an important place to buy spices.

In the autumn people would buy gingerbread hearts in Nuremburg at the Christmas market. Then in 1819 the Brothers Grimm published a collection of traditional German fairy tales. One of the fairy tales is called Hansel and Gretel. Have you ever read it?

In the fairy tale Hansel and his sister Gretel are lost in the woods. They find a house made of bread, cake and candies. But the house belongs to a witch!

In 1893 a famous composer, Engelbert Humperdinck, wrote an opera based on the fairy tale.

In the opera the witch’s house was made of gingerbread. The opera was shown for the first time that Christmas. It was very popular. Pretty soon it was a German Christmas tradition to make gingerbread houses. (CATHERINE THOMAS, STAFF WRITER)








1. gingerbread  n.

薑餅 (jiang1 bing3)

例: My mom bought me a gingerbread man.


2. spice n.

香料 (xiang1 liao4)

例: Nutmeg and ginger are examples of spices.


3. publish  v.i./v.t.

出版 (chu1 ban3)

例: I'm very excited that my book will be published next week.


4. composer  n.

作曲家 (zuo4 qu3 jia1)

例: Beethoven was a famous composer.


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