Wetenschap - 1 januari 1970

The Dutch get ready for Sinterklaas

The Dutch get ready for Sinterklaas

The Dutch get ready for Sinterklaas


‘Nobody recognises you, and playing Zwarte Piet gives you the chance to do
all sorts of mad things’

The evening of 5 December is known in Dutch as pakjesavond, the evening of
presents. The man responsible for bringing presents, Sinterklaas, arrived
from Spain nearly three weeks ago, accompanied by his helpers, and the
tension for young children this week is almost unbearable. Students in
Wageningen also give a few hours of their time each year to help out as
Zwarte Piet or Sinterklaas. claims one Zwarte Piet.

This year is the third time that Sitske Rennen has put on her Zwarte Piet
disguise. She visited a family last Sunday together with another Piet and
Sinterklaas. Her Zwarte Piet costume consists of a red and black suit made
of corduroy, edged with gold, a fitted jacket and knickerbocker trousers.
Zwarte Pieten are totally black, so she wears black tights, long black
gloves and wig. She makes her face black in front of a mirror, using a
sponge and paintbrush to apply the liquid body make-up. She needs the brush
to make sure all bits of her ears and nose are covered. “It often takes
longer to clean the stuff off than put it on,

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