Παρασκευή, 25 Φεβρουαρίου 2011

EASTER CUSTOMS IN AROMANIANS - VLACHS


During the first 3 days of Holy Week, women washed the clothes and made house preparations. On Holy Wednesday they ‘ak'tse alatrulu tri tutu anlu = they ‘took up the dough for the whole year’, while at night they got the paint for the Easter eggs ready. On Holy Thursday, before dawn, they  painted red eggs (Symbolic :Before dawn ‘burst’, to avoid the  physical burst of eggs)  Only on Holy Wednesday evening, they painted  red only one egg  and they put it on the icon of the house  to be kept  there till next Easter. On Thursday morning, with this red egg, they crucified the faces of all family members, especially children, with a variety of wishes as following: 
‘Ou aroSu, fatsa aroЅa = red egg, red face’,
Or   ‘Ka Ou aroЅu, Ѕi ka kiatr' s'n'tosu = Like red egg and strong like a stone’, 
Or ‘Gini viniЅ ou aroЅu, S’n’tosu ka kiatr' mi aflaЅ, s'n'tosu ka kiatr’ smi alaS = Welcome red egg, you found me strong as a stone, you will quit me strong as a stone, too’
  On the same day, before dawn, hung out the window a rug  red like the blood of Christ’s blood , who was sacrificed for all people, and at the same  they prepared the ‘Eptazima’ (p'ni   ku Ѕiapti alaturi = bread with seven  yeasts) and Easter buns (tsurekia). 
  On Holy Friday afternoon, they went to the cemetery and lit candles for their own dead people for forgiveness, while on Saturday morning, men slaughtered the lambs, livestock families were distributing milk to their relatives and friends, and women were preparing the Easter soup (magiritsa) and the rest small pieces of meat (lianomata). 

  At Easter, the Aromanians-Vlachs did not put the lamb on the  spit   but in the pan al together with ‘lianomata’, and this was because, after men slaughtered the lambs, milking of sheep started, they had no time to waste because they were busy. They put lambs στη on the spit mostly during summer celebrations. It is obvious that   women participated in all church services and all church events of those holy days (decoration of Epitaph, etc). On Resurrection night, the whole family participated in the religious Suite of Resurrection and clinked red eggs with the proper wishes. 
On the first Friday after Easter, Life-Giving Spring Celebration  all families of the Aromanians -Vlachs from Veria  went to Dovra monastery of Mary Good, lit the candles of    Resurrection, and entertained all day. 
  In some villages there was the following custom called ‘Luna al Pasti = Moon of Easter’. In the first full moon after Easter, the whole family went out to pray Moon for the good of the house. 
   Mother of the family ,with a  piece of bread in  her hand,   a glass of  ‘speechless’ water (it is water taken from the fountain without any word to say) , a glass of wine and   a  number of spoons  same as  the family members, begged  Moon  as following: 
 ‘Gini Vinis Luna al PaЅti, io ka tini, Si tini ka mini (io), Barba ata p’n di keptu, Barba amia p’n di badi, k't' arina ari badi, tuti parats pung' ali tati =
Welcome ,Moon of Easter, I  am like you and you  are like me, your beard  is till  your chest, my beard is till the  ground, I wish  as much sand is on the ground ,so  much money (to) be in our  family leader’s (father) pocket.

   It should be noted that when Easter was late (this celebration is not at the same dates), Aromanians-Vlachs nomads got ready to climb onto   their high summer pastures, particularly Aromanians-Vlachs from of Thessaly, had, necessarily, at the end of May to be in Grevena for the celebration of St. Achilles, for two reasons: (1) To sell textiles made by women in winter and (2) to obtain supplies necessary for their summer stay in the mountains. Moreover, summer periods started on Saint George’s Day and ended on Saint Dimitris’ Day. So, many times, Romanians-Vlachs nomads spent Easter on the road.
  In Klisura (an Aromanian village), Western Macedonia, during Easter Day, on “Second Resurrection’, when   the priest read the gospel, the cattle-breeders beat the bells, to convey the message   of Resurrection to the world and also for the good of their herds.  Easter Day was a day of joy and entertainment, where big dances and ‘visiting’ to houses were done. 
One of the rare rituals  that took place during  Easter period  were the ‘swings’  that were common in  the villages of Western Macedonia (Klisura, Vlasti , Nimfeo ,etc)  also in villages of Pontus, Eastern Thrace and   general in all  Greece. 
*  «This folk performance has a direct relationship with the "swing" of the virgins of Athens during the Celebration of flowers (Anthestiria) and it is considered as a residue of this Ancient celebration. In ancient times ‘swinging’ had cathartic function, achieved through the air. The custom of ‘swinging’ indeed   is connected with a legend associated with Dionysus and a hero, named Ikarios, who came from the Municipality Ikaria (of Attiki Prefecture). 
   Therefore, it was not a simple game or entertainment of villagers, but a habit not uncommon in many rural festivals, and it had initially a rather magical character and aimed to achieve euphoria of fruit and fertility of women. The swings were common on Easter Sunday, on Easter Monday, on Sunday after Easter and on Saint George’s and Saint Mark’s.  Feasts ».
   As we said before, this folk performance (‘dromeno’ in Greek) had magic and wish character, was inextricably linked to the human need for fertility of land and for personal happiness and prosperity. This is demonstrated by the fact that it is happening in Spring and by the use, also of objects such as flowers, the egg and the small stone. That magic and wish character is confirmed by the songs that accompanied it and had a specific content, always similar to the person (girl or boy) who swang and his hidden desires. For the young unmarried woman and free young man, the wish, through the song, was to get well married, while for the newly married, the wish was, their man to come soon from abroad. 
 However, the original magic character was gradually replaced by the human need for sociability and ‘show off’ and the folk performance (dromeno) was converted into a feast, accompanied by traditional instruments and dances. 

(Sources: Website: Cultural association of Vlachs from Veria, Website: Vlahoi.Net and
*‘The swings in the Easter St. George’s Celebration in the villages of Western Macedonia’, Research-Announcement by Panagiotis Argiropulos, Philologist - Researcher)


(By Yannis Tsiamitros, teacher of traditional dances.
 The original article is in Greek and the translation in
 English is by Yannis. Tsiamitros, too) published in  
local paper “LAOS’ ,Town  Veria ,Greece on 02-04-2010

Δεν υπάρχουν σχόλια:

Δημοσίευση σχολίου

Η κόσμια κριτική και η ανταλλαγή απόψεων μεταξύ των σχολιαστών είναι σεβαστή. Σχόλια τα οποία υπεισέρχονται σε προσωπικά δεδομένα ή με υβριστικό περιεχόμενο να μην γίνονται. Τα σχόλια αποτελούν καθαρά προσωπικές απόψεις των συντακτών τους. Οι διαχειριστές δεν ευθύνονται σε καμία περίπτωση για τυχόν δημοσίευση υβριστικού ή παράνομου περιεχομένου στα σχόλια των αναρτήσεων.Τα σχόλια αυτά θα διαγράφονται με την πρώτη ευκαιρία.