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Autumn jewellery

In Southern Germany, a common term for a female member of the herd of harvest helpers. In Rheingau dialect, Muck means "mother pig". This refers to the fact that, as a criterion for the honourable selection, the woman had to be physically "womanly and strong" (muckelich). In this old custom, especially in the Rheingau, a woman was chosen who had cut off the last grape in a vineyard during the grape harvest (autumn). This was not left to chance, but a particularly quick-witted and entertaining person was chosen and given this task. The "Herbstmuck", whose head was decorated with vines or leaves and/or grapes, moved into the vineyard with the other harvest helpers, sitting on the latfass (special barrel) transported by a horse-drawn cart. Once there, the Herbstmuck addressed the crowd with a saying about wine. Then the end of the harvest was celebrated with food and wine. The Herbstmuck also brings the first Federweißen to church. In the municipality of Rüdesheim, this custom is still practised today. The Herbstschmüerel played another fun role in the grape harvest festival. See also under Autumn as well as other customs under Winegrowing Customs.

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