THE "SCHURTEN" THIEVES

One of the most frequently cited origin legends of the Tschäggättä is the legend of the "Schurten" thieves:

 

In the woods on the shadow side of the valley used to live the "Schurten" thieves. To this day you can see the farms, preferably on the "Giätrich", across from the village Wiler. These were small but stocky men who spent their nights robbing and stealing. They took no one in their covenant, if he could not jump over the Lonza at "Gsellisch Chinn" with a burden of a hundred and one pound. Therefore, the "Schurten" thieves (shurt = short, small) refer to some sort of a men's association, whose costumes are sometimes associated with the Tschäggättä: The "Schurten" thieves are said to have worn wooden masks, skins and hanging clamps.