What makes Germans so orderly?

BBC. 2020. For centuries, Germany has been synonymous with order. So how can a rule-abiding nation also have an anything-goes spirit?

In the nearly four years I’ve lived in Germany, that woman’s reprimand was just one of many examples I’ve experienced of Germans strictly adhering to the rules in the name of preserving Ordnung (order). Because in Germany, as the famous expression goes, “Ordnung muss sein” (“there must be order”). In fact, this proverbial saying is so well-ingrained in the German psyche that it’s become a cultural cliché for Germans around the world, and a way of life for them at home.

Orderly, yes. But slaves to rules? No.