Monday, April 13, 2009

Easter Monday customs & folklore

At my home town of Bellingen, NSW, Australia, it is an ancient Easter Monday custom (dating from a recent year) to put away the washing, microwave Good Friday's hot cross buns, make a cup of tea and write to one's friends abroad with tales of ancient folk customs ...

However, Australia is not the only country with a heart-warming sense of culture and community: thankfully there are other places of the world where Easter Monday is commemorated just as richly. Poland is one of these, and Dyngus Day is its Easter Monday. It is also called: Smigus, Smingus, Smyngus, Splash Monday, or Wet Monday (Mokry Poniedzialek or Lany Poniedzialek).

Today according to Australian Eastern Standard Time when this item was posted

Poland's Dyngus, or Smigus, Day is said to hark back to the baptism of the founder of Polish Christianity, Prince Mieszko I (c. 935 - 992), and his entire court, on Easter Monday, 966. Dyngus is an ancient celebration which is still observed both in country villages and the big cities, with singing, pranks, visiting friends' houses, and the custom of dousing.

The custom of pouring water is an ancient spring rite of cleansing, purification, and fertility – at this time of year there are drenching customs enacted in Sri Lanka and Thailand during their respective New Year celebrations. In a Spring custom of pagan (pre-Christian Slavic) times, the Poles 'confronted' (dingen) Nature with their pouring of water and switching with pussy willows to purify themselves for the year ahead. The alternative name for the day comes from smiganie, meaning 'switching' ...

More at our Easter Monday page

Easter at Wilson's Almanac

Categories: , , , , , , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home

eXTReMe Tracker