The Night Thread of the Sausages (Wednesday Oct. 5)

Five hundred years ago in Zurich, Christoph Froschauer served sausages at a party, leading to several arrests. It was Lent, and under Catholic canon law at the time, that meant no eating meat. Froschauer, a printer, was part of a Reformation-minded faction of Swiss who believed Lenten fasting wasn’t mandatory for Christians, since it wasn’t in the Bible. His sausages were thus a political act, which became known as the Affair of the Sausages. The cause was taken up by a pastor named Huldrych or Ulrich Zwingli, who was at the sausage party, “but did not inhale.”1 Zwingli would go on to be a leading figure of the Reformation in Switzerland, including by producing a German translation of the Bible (which Froschauer published).

I was going to post this yesterday when I happened across it, but it was Yom Kippur, and it seemed in bad taste to write about Christian ideas of fasting on a Jewish fast day. But it’s after sundown now, the fast is broken, and regardless of nation or creed, there is a sausage out there for each of us, even if it’s one of those vegan legume-based ones. Shana tova.