De roe (A rod) of bundled twigs – also called a “gard” – was not only used by Sinterklaas. A naughty child would traditionally get “Love blows” with, “not out of hatred.” In 1820 the rod in schools was officially banned, but Sinterklaas and his helpers kept it threatening with it until about 1980.

Etching by Jan Luyken, 1775


2 thoughts on “De Roe

  1. It can be painful if you use a little too much force and it takes some cleaning afterwards if you break the skin to avoid infection.
    Still with kids “love taps” were used. Now it's for kids forbidden, thank God.



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