Enchanted by a mysterious spell, the old Kaiser Frederick I. Barbarossa was transported to an underground palace in the Kyffhäuser Mountains where he is still in a deep sleep sitting on an ivory chair at a large round marble table, with his head resting in his hands. His red beard glows like embers and has grown right through the table down to its feet and almost all the way around it. Every hundred years the Kaiser wakes from his deep sleep, moves his head and blinks to summon his faithful gnome Alberich. He asks Alberich to climb up to the outside of the mountain to see if the ravens are still squawking and flying around it. If they are, great sadness overcomes the Kaiser and he murmurs into his beard that he must wait yet another hundred years before he can return to the outside to bring unity and peace to the world. Sighing, he closes his eyes again and sleeps for another hundred years. Only when his beard has grown all the way around the round marble table will his waiting come to an end because at this point, a proud eagle will sweep up into the air, frighten the ravens away, the Kaiser and his faithful followers will awake from the spell, climb up and out into his worldly palace and restore order everywhere. 


100 years ago chroniclers described Barbarossa as follows: He was a well-built man of medium height, with blonde hair, white skin and a ginger beard. He was a noble, brave, generous ruler, steadfast in both luck and misfortune; persistent in what he regarded to be just and to be his duty. Frederick had an admirable memory and exceptional knowledge for his time.


Acerbus Morena (deceased: 1167) wrote of Frederick I.:

"The Kaiser was of the most noble origins. He was of medium build, had a pleasant frame and even, well-proportioned limbs, his pale-skinned face appeared to have been dashed with a red tint. His facial expression was cheerful as if he always wanted to smile; he had white teeth, very beautiful hands and a fine mouth. He was exceptionally aggressive, of long lasting wrath, bold and intrepid, swift and articulate, generous, but not extravagant, careful and foresighted in consultation, quick witted and overflowing with wisdom.
He was affectionate and gracious to friends and well-meaning folk, but terrible and relentless towards enemies. An upholder of justice and lover of rules, devout, charitable, surrounded by luck and loved by almost everyone, so much so in fact, that nature must have been mistaken in creating him as mortal, the man that no other Kaiser had equalled for a long time previously.“    



Barbarossahöhle im GeoPark Kyffhäuser
Mühlen 6, OT Rottleben
99707 Kyffhäuserland

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