Hom Strom

In the afternoon of the first Saturday in January, the older children from Scuol meet on the square in the lower part of the town to build a ‘Hom Strom’ (straw man). They place an old telephone pole, some eight-metres long, on two trestles. They braid rye straw that is specially cultivated for this purpose and harvested by hand in autumn to fashion two long thick strands. These are attached to both ends of the pole and wound tightly around the pole until the roll has a diameter of about two metres. The Hom Strom is transported by truck to a meadow outside the village, where members of the school and the local council use ladders to stand the Hom Strom up and place it in a prepared hole. People must then stand guard over the Hom Strom so that boys from the neighbouring village don’t set it on fire ahead of time.

In the evening, the population of Scuol gathers with other guests in the field near the Hom Strom, while the oldest students light up the area with their ‘Bombas’ (fireballs), made of petrol-soaked rags. At 8 pm sharp, the straw man is set on fire, and everyone sings the Hom Strom song, which local poet Men Rauch composed for the event in 1954.

Detailed description

Hom Strom (PDF, 400 kB, 22.06.2018)Ausführliche Beschreibung




Connected traditions


Domenic Feuerstein: Der «Hom strom» in Scuol. In: Heimatleben
28/1, 1955, p. 16–19

Gudench Barblan: Sitten, Gebräuche und Volksfeste im Unterengadin. In: Schweizerisches Archiv für Volkskunde 19, 1915, p. 65–84

Balser Biert: Hom Strom in Scuol. In: Das Jahr der Schweiz in Fest und Brauch. Ed. Rolf Thalmann. Zürich, 1981

Paul Eugen Grimm: Scuol. St. Moritz, 2012

Fadrina Hofmann: Scuol feiert auch heute noch den Sonnengott. In: Südostschweiz, 9.2.2015

Gabriela Holderegger, Jano Felice Pajarola: Der Strohmann entgeht nie seinem Schicksal. In: Muntognas magicas. Chur, 2011

Cla Schur: Gelebtes Brauchrum: Der Hom strom in Scuol. In: Bündner Woche, 13.2.2013

Erich Schwabe: Feste und Traditionen in der Schweiz, Band 1. Neuenburg, 1984

Walter Schweizer: L'hom strom: ein alter Engadiner Brauch. In: Feierabendkalender 1968, p. 106–108

Schulkinder Scuol: Hom-Strom-Lied. Aufnahme von Radio Télévision Suisse Romande. In: Der klingende Jahreskreis (Compact Disc). Oberhofen am Thunersee (Zytglogge), 2013