Easter superstitions and Christmas magic
Hi everyone around the world, here in Finland we are in the middle of the darkest period of our entire year. Toni you asked me about the darkness. I guess we are so used it that we have learned to live with the dark. It is the time, when we gather strength by reading and contemplating, but no, we do not sleep through the winter. Marianna, thank you for your recipe, I am trying to honor it.
HYOSHIL you asked about Easter witch tradition. As it often is with major Holy days, certain superstitions are part of Easter also. People used to believe that witches were especially active and the magic was powerful during Easter week. Even in modern times (say about 30 years ago) it was believed that old women practiced black magic by hurting animals in their shelters. I do remember this very well from my childhood days, a few elderly women did used to do it.
According to tales, Easter witches move about by flying around with the help of a broomstick. In the Nordic countries, witches fly between Good Friday and Easter Sunday. According to popular belief, witches were old women who had sold themselves to the devil. In some parts of Western Finland, the custom of burning bonfires on Holy Saturday for scaring witches remains.
Why my daughter Katri in my previous blog was dressed up as an Easter witch? It is part of Easter celebration that children with sooty faces and scarves tied round their heads go begging, carrying baskets, coffee pots and bunches of decorated “virpovitsa” willow twigs.
Pussy willows are ancient Easter decorations. I am sorry to say that – no matter how we tried – Katri was not able to take off and fly! The broomstick just would not fly! In Finland children began walking around villages dressed as witches as early as the 1800s and they still do so.
Nice to see you Filippo are still here also. Hania my best to you! And my warmest regards to everyone, I want to wish you all a very wonderful Christmas time from the land of Santa.
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