<ul><li>Novruz is associated with spring, start of agricultural activities, renewal of nature and warm days. This period being of great importance it caused many traditions and rites associated with magic. Celebrations began four weeks before the actual day of festivity. </li></ul>
These four weeks - or, exactly four Wednesdays - were each devoted to one of the four elements. They were: Su Charhshanba (Water Wednesday), Odlu Charhshanba (Flame Wednesday), Torpaq Charhshanba (Earth Wednesday), Akhir Charhshanba (Last Wednesday).
<ul><li>According to folk beliefs, on Water Wednesday 'water renewed and dead-water came to stir'; the Flame Wednesday was believed the day of fire rebirth; on Earth Wednesday the earth revived. On the Last Wednesday the wind opened tree buds and spring arrived. The most important of the Wednesdays was the Akhir Charhshanba (Last Wednesday. First of the essential traditions was the concoction of a ritual food named Samani (malt) This food had magical and cultic importance and was considered sacred ritual food. </li></ul>
FOOD <ul><li>According to beliefs, plenty of food and holiday dishes would provide sufficiency of these products in New Year. </li></ul><ul><li>For instance, it should have include components usually not used. Here the magic "7" has to be mentioned as an element often found in Novruz rites, among which "Yeddi lovun" (seven things) is remarkable. Actually, it consisted of putting seven things - salt, bread, an egg, rue, a piece of coal and a mirror - in a copper tray onto the holiday table and leaving them for 12 days. </li></ul>
<ul><li>In order to find the happy match unmarried girls throw black coins, a sign of bad luck, to a water-filled jug during the daytime and in the evening before sunset they pour this water out together with the coins outside. </li></ul><ul><li>On "Akhyr Cheshenbe" before dark there comes the time of fortune telling. Azerbaijani girls and young men sneak to doors of their neighbors and "overheard" their conversation; then on the basis of the first words they have heard they try to tell their fortune and guess if their wishes will come true. On this day many families also tell fortunes using Khafiz book </li></ul>
<ul><li>Today in Azerbaijan the official celebration of Novruz comes on March 21st. On the first day of the New year it is a tradition to rise early in the morning. If it is possible people go where water is -to a river or a spring: wash themselves, splash water on each other. Water is a symbol of cleanliness and freshness. Right there they treat each other with sweets. On this morning it is obligatory to eat something sweet for example honey or sugar. Then it is necessary to smell a fragrant smoke that is the way of getting rid of "evil spirits. </li></ul>
<ul><li>Right there they treat each other with sweets. On this morning it is obligatory to eat something sweet for example honey or sugar. Then it is necessary to smell a fragrant smoke that is the way of getting rid of "evil spirits. </li></ul><ul><li>As a rule during holidays the doors are not locked. It means that the family is home and glad to welcome guests. Children visit their friends and relatives with little bags for holiday presents </li></ul>