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Ignazhden 20th December

Ignazhden (Saint Ignatious Day) 20th December



Date: December 20th

Saint Ignatius – The God bearer

It is believed on this day until Christmas Eve that the Virgin Mary’s labour continued and it is the beginning of the transition to the New Year.  This day marks the beginning of the folk New Year.  On this day people are careful not to take anything out of the house. Everybody must bring things in so that the year is “full”. and it is very good if everyone has a coin in their pocket. A vegetarian meal is consumed.

It is also the name day of everyone called Ignat, Plamen, Ognyan, Agna and their derivatives.

About Saint Ignatius

Saint Ignatius lived in the first-second centuries A.D., was thrown to the lions in Rome, where he died as a martyr. He had converted to Christianity at a young age, legend has it he was one of the children whom Jesus had taken into his arms and blessed.  Later in life he was chosen to serve as Bishop of Antrioch.

Ignazhden Traditions

The most popular thing for that holiday is the ritual “polazwane” (crawling). It depends on whoever enters in the house on Ignazhden what the next year would be like. If the man who enters first is a good man there will be luck and success in everything in the house during the year. If that someone is not a lucky man there will not be welfare for the home and especially for the economy during the year. If the man is good and he has had happiness in the previous year, the hosts give the man their blessing and invite him or her to be their spolaznik (the man who enters the house first) next year as well. In case the spolaznik is bad and brings unhappiness and misfortune to the house during the whole year they send him away.

  • If Ignazhden weather is clear, in April there will be a drought.
  • If it rains, in April there will be rain and fertility.
  • It is good if it’s snowing on Ignazhden and Christmas.
  • If Ignazhden weather is cloudy, the harvest will be good in the hives will be plenty.

Folk Legends

  • Don’t take anything from the house.
  • Do not want and do not give anything borrowed.
  • Do not leave the table during a meal
  • Do not sew and knit
  • Do not wash
  • It is not good if you conceive a child during Ignazhden
  • Pregnant women shouldn’t work in order to give birth easily
  • Do not move bee hives as they will flee
  • Men do not harness livestock are healthy and lively throughout the year.

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