Threads of Grey and Gold
At Frankfort-on-the-Main a very pretty custom is observed. On New Year's eve the whole city keeps a festival with songs, feasting, games, and family parties in every house. When the great bell in the cathedral tolls the first stroke of midnight, every house opens wide its windows. People lean from the casements, glass in hand, and from a hundred thousand throats comes the cry: "Prosit Neujahr!" At the last stroke, the windows are closed and a midnight hush descends upon the city.
The hospitable Norwegians and Swedes spread their tables heavily; for all who may come in at Stockholm there is a grand banquet at the Exchange, where the king meets his people in truly democratic fashion.
The Danes greet the New Year with a tremendous volley of cannon, and at midnight old Copenhagen is shaken to its very foundations. It is considered a delicate compliment to fire guns and pistols under the bedroom windows of one'