“Zwänzgerle” – Tradition in Zurich

“Zwänzgerle” – which is loosely translated as “20-cent coin throwing” – is an Easter tradition celebrated in the city of Zurich.

April 13, 2020

On the morning of Easter Monday, the atmosphere under the arches of Limmatquai and on Rüdenplatz, in the heart of the Old Town, is focused and quiet. Here, crowds of adults and children stand concentrating their attention on eggs and small coins. For with the tradition of “Zwänzgerle”, adults throw 20-cent coins at hard-boiled eggs held out by children with the aim of making them lodge in the shell. If they succeed, the thrower keeps the egg and the coin. An almost impossible task – much to the delight of the children, as every coin that falls to the ground instead of sticking in the egg belongs to them.

This custom appears to date from the 18th century and is an Easter tradition alongside “egg tapping”.


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