Above: The Devil from the Cary Sheet
Below: 20th Century postcards of Krampus


Krampus and the Cary Sheet

While I was in London, I came across a book of postcards from Germany and Austria, the postcards date from the early 20th century. The entire book is filled with postcards of Krampus. "Cool", I thought, I'll pull this out next Xmas.

Then I was looking at the Cary Sheet last night and, what do you know, when I looked at the "Devil" card, I saw a distinct relationship to Krampus.

The most obvious connection is the "basket" on Krampus' back which he puts bad children in.

There are differences of course, Krampus usually has a switch to beat bad children with, but he sometimes has a pitchfork. Krampus is sometimes shown with one foot and one hoove, which I think is common in Germanic countries. Krampus almost always has his long red tongue hanging out, the Cary devil does not. Krampus is often in chains, Cary devil is not.

Then I was thinking a bit more about it and wondered... how often is the Devil portrayed with a basket on his back? Can anyone point me to some images like that? Is this common throughout Europe? Or is it a Germanic thing?

Are there earlier Tarot depictions of the Devil than ?

Here's the Cary Sheet and 3 postcards from the early 20th century: