February 18, 2018

Humorous Gargoyle of Freiburg

Anyone traveling in Europe has seen Gargoyles staring down at you from high atop cathedrals like Notre Dame in Paris France.

Gargoyle Notre Dame Paris France

Gargoyle Notre Dame Paris France

They do have a menacing look to them and, in fact, part of their lore says they protect the churches from evil spirits. In actuality, they have a very useful function. Gargoyles are water spouts which keep rainwater away from the sides of the building where the forces of water would damage them in the same way rivers carve canyons.

Gargoyles on the Munster Freiburg Germany

Different types of Gargoyles look down on you in Freiburg!

Although we usually associate Gargoyles with medieval time they were used during other times until architects started using gutters. We also usually associate Gargoyles as being scary and grotesque but some Gargoyles depict monks, animals and some are even very humorous.

Horse Gargoyle Munster Freiburg GermanyHuman Gargoyle Munster Freiburg Germany

I ran into a humorous Gargoyle while visiting the Munster in Freiburg Germany.  As I was looking up at the church, I noticed many Gargoyles dotting the sides.  Then I ran into this one.  After a double take, I realized I was right.  This Gargoyle seems to be mooning everyone!  Since it rained while I was in Freiburg, I actually got to see it work too : )

Humorous Gargoyle Munster Freiburg Germany

Look closely at the Gargoyle on the left, it is mooning you!

Have you seen a humorous Gargoyle?

These pictures are part of Travel Photo Thursday! For more great pictures,make sure to check out Budget Travelers Sandbox.

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  1. Giuseppe says:

    Wonderful post! We will be linking to this particularly great
    content on our site. Keep up the good writing.
    Giuseppe recently posted..Giuseppe

  2. Amy Moore says:

    Ha! I love finding things like that.
    Amy Moore recently posted..Travel is an Education : Homeschool at Home, Unschooling on the Road

  3. Sophie says:

    Don’t think I’ve noticed any humorous gargoyles (probably haven’t looked closely enough). I do remember a humorous statue or two, though – in Germany, actually 🙂
    Sophie recently posted..The lonely convent

  4. I was certainly fascinated by the Gargoyles when we visited France in 2005. I couldn’t work out why they are depicted as they are. LOL I love the humour obviously shown by the creator of the “mooning” gargoyle.
    Have you seen “Pillars of the Earth” series – the guys iun this was carving gargoyles.
    Have a wonderful week and thank you for stopping by my blog the other day.

  5. Count me in as ones who didn’t know their purpose as water spouts. The Notre Dame gargoyles scared my kids 🙁 I like the Freiburg versions though and love all the whimsical characters especially the mooning one. I’ll have to keep my eyes open for funny gargoyles in Germany this summer.
    Mary {The World Is A Book} recently posted..5 Free Things to do in Ketchikan Alaska with Kids

    • Debbie Beardsley says:

      I was so used to the Notre Dame type of gargoyles that I never realized they could be any other design! Yes, do keep your eyes open. I’d love to see other versions of gargoyles.

  6. Well I never knew that! How fascinating and much more interesting than gutter run offs!
    Johanna at ZigaZag recently posted..Eleven Point Plan for Successful Blogging

  7. I do like seeing gargoyles even though most times they look more hideous than humorous.
    I’d trade some, humorous or not, for gutters any day. Gutters are so unimaginative!
    InsideJourneys recently posted..A Walking Tour of Falmouth Jamaica, Part II

    • Debbie Beardsley says:

      I know what you mean. Recently I’ve seen some folks use decorative chain thingys as downspouts. They look pretty interesting and a lot more artistic!

  8. HI Debbie, I’m not a fan of gargoyles; they scare me. But in this case. I find them lovable. Never thought there’s a humorous side to them. I wish all gargoyles are as fun as these ones.

  9. Jessica says:

    I love gargoyles! It would be great to be a gargoyle designer, I think.
    Jessica recently posted..Weird and Wacky Texas: Visiting Little Graceland in South Texas

  10. budget jan says:

    I never knew of their practical purpose, that is amazing! Good photo of Notre Dame gargoyles 🙂
    budget jan recently posted..Magnetic Island – See you later Nelly

  11. Lisa says:

    I had no idea that gargoyles were water spouts – I thought that they were decorative. I have always loved the Notre Dame gargoyles. Have you ever watched the Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame movie? In it the gargoyles come to life and they have very distinctive personalities. Your Freiburg gargoyle looks like he would be quite a funny character if he could talk! 😉
    Lisa recently posted..The Man With Two Hats – A Monument to Peace

    • Debbie Beardsley says:

      I haven’t seen that movie but now you’ve piqued my interest and I may just have to watch it!

  12. Muza-chan says:

    Great photos 🙂
    Muza-chan recently posted..A Japanese Song per Day: Kaya – Marionette

  13. Leigh says:

    I had not appreciated that the purpose of the gargoyle was to keep water away from the building. I wouldn’t mind having a gargoyle in my garden – though probably not a mooning gargoyle.
    Leigh recently posted..An Easy Hike in Lighthouse Park in West Vancouver

    • Debbie Beardsley says:

      The mooning gargoyle really caught me by surprise! Someone had a sense of humor and was sending a big message 🙂

  14. Jeff Titelius says:

    I just loved the gargoyles at the top of Notre Dame!! What a fascinating post my friend with such interesting characters “hanging” out on the ledges!!
    Jeff Titelius recently posted..The Art of Édouard Manet, Pioneer of Modernism

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