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BLAGOVESHTENIE (ANNUNCIATION DAY)

BLAGOVESHTENIE (ANNUNCIATION DAY)

3/25/2018 9:00:00 AM

Name day of everyone named Blagovest/à, Blagoy, Blaga, Vangel, Evangelina, Bonka.







Ritual table: fish (baked or boiled), flat cake, onion pastry.







 







The feast is also known under the name of Blagovshtene, Blagovets, Blagoets - in English: ANNUNCIATION, or LADY DAY.

 In the traditional conceptions, this day is associated with the arrival of the migratory birds and with the final springtime awakening of Nature. After Blagoveshtenie Day, everyone should come out of their houses well-fed and having money in his/her pocket. According to the tradition, a cuckoo bird should sing a song, so everyone  will be well-fed and have money throughout the year.

It is also believed that if someone is the very first to see a stork that is not flying but is lying in a nest or walking around, illness will come to that person.

 Another interesting belief: If a young woman or an unmarried young man first see a cuckoo bird, she/he should tie three knots on an empty cloth, then place it on the roof of their house and three days later there will be a prophesy about the spouse she/he is going to get.

On the Blagoveshtenie Day, acts are performed associated with the folk etymology of the name of the holiday:

  • Vegetables are planted and fruit trees are grafted so that they might be "sweet";
  •  fruit trees that do not bear fruit should be "frightened away";
  • lambs and kids are getting "marked", because it is believed that the marking would then give them less pain in life.







  • Bee keepers open the beehives and let the bees out to collect sweet honey.
  • The ears of small girls are pierced for earrings.
  • It is believed that on Blagoveshtenie even the strongest poison loses its power.

According to the beliefs, wood nymphs begin their games on this day. Snakes and lizards wake up on this day and get out of their dens, so rituals are performed of a protective and reptile-repulsive power.

Before sunrise, women sweep clean the houses, light a fire at one or at three places or in all corners of the courtyard, and place cattle manure in the fires to smoke and send away all reptiles.

Children and grown-ups strike tins and bells, and run in a circle around the courtyard and the house. These acts are accompanied by singing a special incantation: "Run away snakes and lizards, today is Lady Day", or "Run away, snakes, Lady Day will fall on top of you", and the like.















Children and young people jump over the burning fire; the young men slightly singe their feet, so that no snakes might bite them during the summer.

If they want to stay protected, women are not supposed to do any sewing ("so that snakes may not riddle them") and they are not supposed to make any bread ("for a snake may roll up in it"). In Western Bulgaria region, starting from the morning on Lady Day, maidens make turns around of their villages, singing special songs for Annunciation.

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Blagoveshtenie Day is also a major Orthodox Christianity church holiday, reaffirmed during the 7th century. According to the Holy Script, on that day, nine months before the birth of Jesus Christ, Archangel Gabriel appeared to the Holy Virgin.

He told her that she would become the mother of the Son of God. That sweet news also gave the name of the holiday in Bulgarian - Blagoveshtenie (meaning "Sweet News").

 

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