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Cologne Cathedral's 'Fat Peter' bell clapped out

The Local · 7 Jan 2011, 11:27

Published: 07 Jan 2011 11:27 GMT+01:00

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The bronze giant, nicknamed "Decker Pitter" - or "Fat Peter" - by locals in the western German city, stopped ringing after a "really loud noise" was heard in the bell tower on Thursday, witness and bell expert Jen Hendrik Stens said.

"It was pretty clear to me that the clapper had broken," Stens told broadcaster Domradio.

The bell dates back to the 1920s, weighs a hefty 24 tonnes and measures more than three metres (10 feet) across.

It is only heard on special occasions such as major Christian festivals, making a fine, melancholy low "C." It sounded on Thursday just as worshippers were arriving to celebrate Epiphany.

Its predecessor was first cast in 1873 from French canons after the Franco-Prussian war, but was melted down in 1918 shortly before Germany's defeat in World War I to make last-ditch armaments.

Story continues below…


The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

20:49 January 7, 2011 by sailud
When the bell itself is undamaged, can't a new clapper be made and installed?

I saw the bell last in 1994 when my late wife Hedwig and I went back to our former homeland for a visit and to show her where my guardian Angel had saved my life three times in one day back in September 1944 on my way back to near Aachen where my Group 3 of the JG 53 "Pik As" Messerschmitt 109 fighter squadron was located. The entire story of what happened that day is written in my book:"Another Bowl Of Kapusta", the true life story of a WW II Luftwaffe Fighter Pilot and P.O.W. in Russia published by www.AuthorHouse.com. In chapter five on page 140: A day of miracles.

My name is Gottfried P. Dulias and my E-mail address is sailud@aol.com
21:46 January 7, 2011 by DinhoPilot

What the deuce to advertising!
07:30 January 8, 2011 by wood artist
A Clapper Caper?

(Sorry, but you've got to be quite old to understand that)

I saw the bell last in early May of last year, and my book isn't completed yet, although I'm working diligently on it.

wa, in a strange mood tonight.
04:02 April 6, 2012 by Peter Bell
So sad, I sincerely hope it's possible to fix this magnificent bell, which was apparently named after me!
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