April 12, 2014 2:49 pm -

Lovely teacups with the image of Adolf Hitler positioned between rose petals showed up at a German emporium.

The question of how hundreds of cups bearing a stamp from the Third Reich showing Hitler’s profile made their way to the shelves of a family-owned furniture and housewares chain has become a matter for the authorities. On Friday, prosecutors in Dortmund said they had opened an investigation over a display of Nazi symbols, which is illegal in Germany.

“Nothing like this has ever happened in 75 years that my family has been in the business,” said Christian Zurbrüggen, director of the chain based in Unna, Germany, that bears his family’s name. He said the cups had been ordered from a producer in China and nobody noticed the stamp, visible only on some of the cups, when they were unpacked and put on display.

The kitschy, vintage-style cups were on sale for three days at the Zurbrüggen stores before anyone noticed the small stamp showing the profile of the Nazi dictator above the word “Reich,” complete with a swastika postmark.

D.B. Hirsch
D.B. Hirsch is a political activist, news junkie, and retired ad copy writer and spin doctor. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.