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Spring traditions

Customs in Summer

 

Customs in Winter

Christmas fortune telling

Part of Christmas Eve was some fortune telling. Everyone liked it, even if they were a little bit worried. The most common is cutting the apple. If there was a star in the middle, it meant fortune, if there was a cross, illness or death. Very simmilar was oppening the wallnut. If the inside was bright, the next year will be bright too. If black or dark, the next year will be sad and unhappy. 

Also single ladies liked this time. They stood in the door with back to the room. They had a shoe in their right hand and thew it behind themself. If the tip of the shoe was pointing the door, it meant the will get marry and leave home. If it was pointing inside the room, another year with parents. 

Very common also in nowadays in some families is pouring lead to cold water. It is creating some shapes and with some fantasy you can tell the future. 

Christmas

Christmas Eve table and customs

On Christmas day was common for families come together to one table. The house had to be clean and shiny. On this day people shouldn´t work and also eat. People believed, that if they won´t eat for all day, they will see a gold pig. It was very important to set the table. In the first corner was bread, so it won´t be needed for family the next year. In the second was salt and some parts from harvest, in the third one money and in the fourth food for animals. It all should bring luck family in the next year. 

Number of members of participants had to be even. It was said, that if it´s odd, Death will come for someone so the next year it will be correct. If there weren´t even members, the host set plates for some extra. 

All the family, sitting by the table was chained. Mostly it was rope or chain. It meant the cohesiveness of family. 

Dinner started with peas, which connected family members in good and in bad. Than soup for everyone to be strong and lens for wealth. Than it was some meat or fish for joy and happiness. 

Dinner ended with sweet cake (stollen) and sweets. Noone could stand up from the set table until everyone had finished eating. If yes, it would ment that family won´t come together again the next year. All the food, that rest was given to animals. 

Saint Nicolaus

Saint Nicolaus is the patron of fishermen, sailors but mostly children. St. Nicolaus procession is still famous in nowadays, but from the old times only angel and devil stayed his accompanions. In recent times they comes on the eve of 5. of December. Children are preparing their shoes, to get something nice and sweet, mostly fruits and sweets. If they weren´t good all year long, Nicolaus will bring them only coal and potatoes. To deserve a sweet revard, you can say a poem or sing a song. 

Mik, mik, Mikuláš
Mik, mik, Mikuláš,p?išel s ?ertem na kolá??.
?erte, ?erte chlupatý,nechej pytel za vraty.

Slibuju ti, slibuju,
že už zlobit nebudu.


Mikuláš
Kde se vzal, tu se vzal,
Mikuláš pod okny stál.
V ruce velkou berli?ku,
na hlav? máš ?epi?ku.
Z bílých vous? teplý šál,
takhle, d?ti, vypadal! 

Saint Barbara

In the old times at night before Christmas there was a habit of visits of "Barborky". They were dressed in white, which means purity and innocence and have white vail. They were walking along villages with a basket full of apples, nuts and sweets, which were given to children. 

There is also a custom with cutting a branchlet of cherry on St. Barbara´s day. People believed, that if you put it in the water and wait until it bloom it will bring you luck in one month of the next year. It depended on what number of the day after putting in the water it will start blooming. 

Also girls used this, but in other way. They cut more branchlets and named them after boys. Which one will bloom first, will have the name of future husband. 

Advent and Christmas time

The time of advent is set on the four weeks before Christmas. On every Sunday we light a candle on advent wreath. At this time we should be more patient and reflect our own lifes. We have some customs, that are connected with this time, as for example Saint Barbara, Saint Nicolaus, Saint Lucia and finally Christmas Eve. 

Saint Andrew

Saint Andrew was one of apprentices of Jesus and he was a fisherman. Saint Andrew´s day was in the past very important for prophecy. On his day girl wanted to get know if they got merried or who they would merry. He is the patron of brides

Saint Katherina´s day

In the time of advent before Christmas there was not allowed to have any festivity, dance and sing. So on the Saint Katherina´s day it was the last chance to enjoy dance festivity and everyone tried to use this time as much as could. The custom was, that at this night only women were in charge. They had to pay for music and also for drinks of their partners, prepare refreshment and they also chose who are they dancing with. Only at midnight there was a man choice.

There was also habit, that on this day it wasn´t allowed to work with anything what has wheel, like windmill or spinning wheel. 

Saint Martin´s day

Saint Martin is a patron of soldiers, horses, riders, geese and wine growers. The adage says, that if it snows on the 11.11. the winter is comming, because Saint Martin is comming on his white horse. In our own language we say "Martin na bílém koni". 

It´s also an important day for wine growers. On Saint Martin´ s day the first young wine is opened and tasted from this year´s harvest. 

In the Czech republic is this feast also connected with food, because in these days it´s a habit to eat "Svatomartinskou husu" what is goose with cabbage and dumplings. 

Souls day

In these days our students are working on posters connected to the end of October. In some countries there is Halloween (and because we learn English we also have to know about it :). In our country it´s All Saint´s day (on the 1st of November) and "Duši?ky" (on the 2nd of November). It means we go to cemetery and put some candles and flowers on graves of our beloved ones, who are already gone. It´s a very special time of the year when we should find some time in our rushy life a think about our family. So my advice is to find a nice evening, light a candle in the window a think about everyone who is important in your life. Don´t forget to remeber about the ones who passed away.