Carnival

A brief history

The origins of Basel's Fasnacht are rather obscure, partly because of the terrible earthquake in the year 1356 which destroyed large parts of the city and many official archives.

One of the earliest records date back to Ash Wednesday in 1376, when a jousting tournament on the Münsterplatz was the scene of a row between citizens and knights. The argument escalated into a blood bath and the local citizens chased off the noblemen, killing four of them in the process. 
Retribution was harsh: 12 citizens were beheaded and Emperor Charles IV placed a ban on the city, which meant the city was no longer afforded the protection of the Holy Roman Empire. This fateful day went down in the annals of Basel's history as the «Böse Fasnacht».


During the years the Fasnacht became the way we know today.