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LATVIA
                         PAVILOSTAS VIDUSSKOLA, Pavilosta
Will your love last forever?



In Stameriena castle everything is peaceful and quiet, wooden floors do not ____doors are not
_________and no ________are heard, hovever in the castle parc grows a strange tree.



Vai tava mīlestība būs mūžīga?

Stāmerienas pilī viss ir kluss un mierīgs, dēļu grīdas nečīkst, durvis nevirinās un nav dzirdamas
nopūtas un vaidi, tomēr pils parkā aug dīvains koks......




Stāmerienas muiža




Mīlestības ozoli

Tas ir Mīlestības koks. Dvīņu jeb dubultozols. Nostāsts vēsta, ka pils dārznieks bijis iemīlējies
baronesē. Tomēr neviens nav ļāvis viņiem precēties. Dienā, kad baronesi izdeva pie vīra,
skumjais dārznieks stādījis pils priekšā koku, teikdams, ka tas zaļos tik ilgi, kamēr viņš mīlēs
baronesi. Koks joprojām zaļo un ir skaistāks un pārāks par visiem citiem kokiem. Par šo
mīlestības koku radies arī citāds nostāsts, ka cilvēks, kas spēs izlīst cauri ozola diviem
                                                           stumbriem, iegūs mīlestību, kas
                                                           nekad nebeigsies. Līdz šim gan tas
                                                           nevienam nav izdevies, lai arī ir
                                                           mēģināts. Varbūt tādēļ retajam
                                                           izdevies mīlestību nosargāt?



                                                            Kā cēlusies Gūtmaņala




                                                                               141
Lībiešu virsaitis Ringolds jājis karā. Mājās viņš atstājis skaistu sievu, piekodinādams, lai tā
uzticīgi gaidot viņu pārnākam no kara.

        Sagatavot izdrukai



Gūtmaņa ala




Sieva gaidījusi, gaidījusi un tomēr kļuvusi neuzticīga. Kad vīrs atgriezies, sieva visu rūgti
nožēlojusi un lūgusi piedošanu. Bet Ringolds nav piedevis. Viņš licis sievu dzīvu zemē ierakt. Tur
pazemē raud vēl tagad joprojām nožēlošanas asaras. Avotiņā pārvērtušās tās iztek zemes virsū.
Šis avotinš tecē



Castle Rundale

• Rundāles pils celtniecība neesot vedusies. Cik pa dienu uzcelts, tik pa nakti nogruvis. Viens no
muižniekiem ierosinājis, ka vajagot ziedot cilvēku. Izvēlējušies nabadzīgu zemnieku meitu, un,
lai būtu iemesls meiteni iemūrēt, apvainojuši viņu sagrēkošanā ar augstdzimušu princi. Kopš tā
laikā meitene staigājot pa pili baltā tērpā – Rietumu korpusā šķērsojot biljarda istabu, tālāk
dodoties uz ēdamzāli un tad uz pils Lielajām kāpnēm vai vestibili. Viņa meklējot muižnieku, lai
pierādītu savu nevainību.



• Rundāles pilī esot arī Melnā Dāma,kura parādās noteiktās vakara stundās un slīd cauri pils
gaiteņiem, augšup pa kāpnēm uz Zubova kabinetu. Stāsta, ka Melnā Dāma bijusi kāda
nabadzīga meitene. Šo meiteni bija iemīlējis Valerians Zubovs. Par Zubova mīlestību pret jauno
un skaisto meiteni uzzinājusi ķeizariene Katrīna. Viņa likusi saviem kalpiem Zubovam nocirst
galvu un pasniegt to zelta bļodā. Tas ticis arī izdarīts, bet meitene izgrūsta pa pils otrā stāva
logu. Meitene no kritiena nositusies. Viņa nav apglabāta kapos un kopš tā laika klīstot pa pili,
meklējot mieru.



• Melno Dāmu esot redzējuši pils restaurātori. Viņa parādījusies no kolonnas, neko nerunājot,
uzkāpusi pa trepēm, izgājusi cauri telpām un pēkšņi pazudusi.



                                                                                142
Turaidas

1601. gada pavasarī Poļu-zviedru kara (1600-1629) laikā zviedru karapulki ieņēma Turaidas pili.
Pēc kaujas pils rakstvedis Greifs starp nogalinātajiem atrada dažas nedēļas vecu meitenīti.
Greifs aiznesa meitenīti mājās un apņēmās viņu izaudzināt. Bija maija mēnesis un meitenīti
nosauca par Maiju. Pagāja gadi un Maija izauga par daiļu jaunavu. Viņas skaistuma dēļ Maiju
dēvēja par Turaidas Rozi. Gaujas pretējā krastā — Siguldas pilī — dzīvoja viņas līgavainis —
dārznieks Viktors Heils. Vakaros viņi satikās pie Gūtmaņa alas. Tajā laikā pilī dienēja divi poļu
armijas dezertieri — Jakubovskis un Skudrics. Jakubovskis iekāroja Maiju un vēlējās viņu
precēt, taču meitene bildinājumu noraidīja. Tas Jakubovski tā saniknoja, ka viņš nolēma iegūt
meiteni ar varu. Viņš aizsūtīja Skudricu it kā Viktora uzdevumā pie Maijas, lai viņa atnāktu
ierastajā tikšanās vietā - bet neierastā laikā. Kad Maija atnāca un saprata, ka ir lamatās, viņa
nolēma labāk mirt, nekā tikt apkaunota. Tas bija laiks, kad cilvēki vēl ticēja burvestībām.
Meitenei ap kaklu bija sarkans zīda lakatiņš, ko bija dāvinājis viņas līgavainis, tādēļ viņa teica
Jakubovskim, ka šim lakatiņam piemīt burvju spējas — tā nēsātājs tiek pasargāts no zobena
cirtieniem, un aicināja to pārbaudīt. Jakubovskis sākumā vilcinājās, bet tad cirta no visa spēka
un meitene saļima pie viņa kājām. Jakubovskis nobijās un šausmu pārņemts par izdarīto
aizskrēja uz mežu un pakārās. Pievakarē Heils atrada Maiju alā nogalinātu un steidzās uz
Turaidu pēc palīdzības. Pie alas tika atrasts Viktora cirvītis asinīs. Tiesa notika Turaidas pilī un tā
lēma, ka slepkava ir Viktors un viņu notiesāja uz nāvi. Notikumu gaitu mainīja Skudrics, kurš
bija sekojis Jakubovskim un visu redzējis. Viņš tiesai pastāstīja, kas bija noticis īstenībā un
Viktors tika attaisnots, bet meitene apglabāta kapsētā pie Turaidas baznīcas. Viņas kapa vietu
var aplūkot pie Turaidas baznīcas, Turaidas pils apkārtnē, Turaidā, Siguldā.




                                    Kokneses pilsdrupas.
Ceļot pili kaļķa sajaukšanai ūdens vietā esot lietots piens, ko vajadzēja piegādāt apkārtnes
zemniekiem. (2)

...

Kādā no Kokneses pils pagrabiem glabājas veca nauda, ko te savācis Velns. Viņš pats naudu
sargā, gulēdams uz lādes vai nu melna sunīša vai čūskas izskatā. (2)

...

Kokneses pilskunga meita reiz iemīlējusies pils dārzniekā. Kad pilskungs padzirdējis, ka meita
gribot precēties ar vienkāršu dārznieku, viņš meitu ieslēdzis pils augstākajā tornī. Kad dārznieks
nav gribējis atteikties no meitas rokas, pilskungs licis to nogalināt. Meita pa torņa logu to
redzējusi un nolēkusi zemē.




                                                                                    143
Vēlāk viņu daudzkārt redzējuši sēžam Pērses krastā un uz akmens sukājot matus. Ja kāds
pienācis tuvāk, meitene pazudusi. Ja kāds meiteni pamanījis un bēdzis, viņa skrējusi pakaļ veltā
cerībā, ka ieraudzījusi savu mīļoto dārznieku. (2)




                                  Jaunpils pils
Jaunpils pils ir viena no senākajām bruņinieku pilīm. Apakšējo stāvu mūru biezums pārsniedz
divus metrus. Ir stāsti, ka šajās sienās iemūrēti arī cilvēki. Divi iemūrēti akmeņi pie pils torņa
izmantoti lai uz tiem sēdinātu tos, kas kaut ko noziegušies. Zem akmeņiem bija asi dzelkšņi -
kad noziedznieki vairs nenoturējās uz akmeņiem un nokrita, viņi tika smagi savainoti. Šādi
cilvēki tika iebaidīti, lai viņiem nebūtu vēlmes dumpoties. Savukārt pilī iekšā ir slepenas durvis,
kas ved uz pazemes ejām, kas iet uz baznīcu un uz Karātavu kalnu. 1905.gadā šīs ejas esot
aizvērtas un vairs nav atraktas.

Cēsu pilsdrupas.




Zem Cēsu pils mūriem atrodoties pagrabi, kur esot noraktas visādas mantas. Vienā pagrabā
esot liela dzelzs lāde, kas pilna ar zelta un sudraba lietām, bet uz lādes tupot liels, melns suns
ar ugunīgām acīm un nelaižot nevienu sev klāt. No šiem pagrabiem ejot arī pazemes ejas. Reiz
kāds nebēdnieks nokāpis pagrabos apskatīties. Pēc ilgāka laika viņš iznācis ārā pa smilšakmens
alu, kas atrodas pils parkā. Pārdrošnieks iznesis lielu sidraba lukturi, bet pats palicis mēms un
nevarējis nekā izstāstīt. (3)




Jaunā Šlokenbekas un Durbes barona fon der Rekes dēls Matiass iemīlējis Šlokenbekas
dzirnavnieka meitu. Abi slepus tikušies uz Šlokenbekas dzirnavu dambja. Barons tomēr to
uzzinājis un bijis ļoti nikns. Tik nikns, ka paķēris bisi un auļojis uz ezermalu. Bijusi skaista




                                                                                 144
mēness nakts. Abi jaunieši sēdējuši uz dambja malas, kad ezera otrā krastā parādījies vecais
barons un gribējis meiteni nošaut. Lai nāve viņus neizšķirtu, abi saķērušies rokās un ielēkuši
ezerā.

Barons ļoti pārdzīvojis dēla bojāeju un licis uzcelt mazu piemiņas obelisku ar uzrakstu Matiass
1867. Šis piemineklis joprojām stāv iepretī dzirnavām, pašā ezera krastā. Jaunlaulātie bieži
atrod uz to ceļu un nelaimīgo mīlētāju piemiņai noliek ziedu pušķīti.



Noslīkusī jaunava Šlokenbekas muižā spokojoties. Viņu dēvē par Balto dāmu. (2)




19.gadsimta beigu pils īpašniekam Aleksandram fon Pistolkorsam un viņa sievai Eleonorai bija
divi dēli un meita. Brāļi Ēriks un Maksis bija draugi, kas kopā mācījās Bīriņu pagastskolā un
vēlāk - universitātē. Maksis devās uz Kaukāzu, kur 1911.gadā gāja bojā. Brāļa nāve satrieca līdz
tam jautro un sabiedrisko Ēriku, kurš krita depresijā.



Pateicoties radinieku rūpēm Ēriks pamazām atlaba. Ne mazums nopelnu tajā bija arī viņa
māsas Renātes kalponei - jaukai un sirsnīgai meitenei. Ēriks un kalpone iemīlēja viens otru.
Taču, kad Ēriks vecākiem paziņoja, ka vēlas precēties ar vienkāršu kalponi, viņa māte šādu
iespēju nevēlējās pieļaut. Viņa nolēma apkaunot meiteni, lai tā atstātu muižu un, noorganizējot
Ērika aizbraukšanu, atstāja viltotu Ērika vēstuli, kurā viņš it kā paziņo par savu aizbraukšanu un
precībām ar citu - savas kārtas meiteni.



Ērika māte nezināja, ka kalpone šai laikā jau gaidīja bērniņu. Kalpone neizturēja apkaunojumu
un pakārās.

Traģēdija aptumšoja Ērika prātu un 1912.gadā viņš pils parkā nošāvās.

Stāsta, ka nelaimīgās kalpones gars pilnmēness naktīs klīst pa pili.



Burtnieku pils

Reiz vecos laikos pie Burtnieku ezera bijusi valdnieka pils. Valdnieks ļaudis mocījis ar darbiem.
Bet te piepeši Burtnieku pils nogrimusi ezerā. Dievs parādījās valdniekam un sacīja: kad saule
noies vakaros un rītos uzleks, pa to laiku viņš varēs iziet no nogrimušās pils.




                                                                                145
LITHUANIA
          KAUNO M. TADO IVANAUSKO VIDURINĖ MOKYKLA, Kaunas

 The Christening Traditions in Lithuania




    Once the Christening was one of the most important family
                    celebration. When was it celebrated?

        If the child was healthy, it was waited for a few days, until he/ she became stronger,
and then was carried to christen. If the child was in poor health, then one was christened as
soon as possible.




                                                                             146
When the baby was born, people tried to christen him/ her as
   soon as possible, so why was there such a rush?

        Formerly, it was believed that the unchristened child was very
unsafe. Fairies can switch the human child with their one. Or, something
else bad might happen to such a child.




The choise of the Name. Who chose the name for a
                                  child?

        The Christening - it is the introduction of a new, just-born person
to the human community. During the christening he or she receives a
name that describes a lot of things.




                         How were godparents chosen?

        The selection of godparents is very important. If ones are invited to become
godparents you mustn’t refuse without an important reason, because it is a very
significant event. It was believed that singles couldn’t be godparents, because the
child may never start a family. Therefore, the young godparents were invited
because then, the child would be more caring about a job. Or already married
people were invited but from different families. That is, one from the mother’s and
one from the father's side.




               What are the responsibilities of godparents?



                                                                              147
Often, the godmother of a goddaughter became the matron of honor,
and the godfather of his godson became a matchmaker. The godmother usually
made up T-shirts and embroidered them. She also bought the necklase with the
cross. Godfather gave money and all guests were favoured with sweets.




                     What was the rite of the Christening?

        On leaving for the church, the mother of the baby whispered the name into the ear of
godparents. Until christening ceremony nobody said the child's name publicly.

After returning from the church, all ran to meet the godparents. The godfather offered sweets
and announced baby’s name loudly.

        Then, the godmother gave the baby to his/ her mother and the godmother tried to
unswaddle him/ her immediately in order the baby would be quick. At that time the guests
were sitting at the table, and after a while, the child was shown to the guests.




                                                                                   148
The Christening traditions now…




Godparents are close relatives or family friends …




                                           149
Godparents take care of the child's christening outfits and a
                 christening candle…



T




T



                                                 150
The godmother dresses up the child before the Christening
                      ceremony…




        The Christening ceremony in the church…




                                                  151
Gifts for the Christening from
                                       godparents...

                       A cross or a medallion.




                        A silver spoon with the record of the child's birth date,
                        time, weight and height.




After the Christening ceremony, the parents invite guests for
                           dinner...




                                                               152
During dinner all guests play games which are prepared by
                              parents and godparents…

       The            Christening
newspaper        says        the
information about the child,
the important dates in his/ her
life. There are records of the
christening name, godparents’
names, the christening date
and       location.        Funny
godparents’ promises are also
appended.




   All guests write wishes for the child on the balloons. They are
                 released into the sky at the end of dinner.




                                                               153
The end...




             154
Wedding in Lithuania




Lithuania newlyweds want to use the ancient feast of the wedding ritual items. Some of these
traditions have survived a traditional wedding celebration, but most are adapted to today's
needs and preferences.




                                                                           155
The main characters are parents blessing,

parental consent with bread, salt and water,

the arrival of young and family
focus transfer.




                                               156
In the past, parents were in the house and waited for the returns of the young. It was
a bad luck if parents would go together. These days parents take part in the wedding
ceremony.




              Main wedding traditions are the following:

   • The young woman is carried over the bridges, and one of
     them is suspended with a lock.




                                                                            157
• Table redemption.




• Young dance (waltz).




• A young woman who is placed on the head scarf, and the
  young man surrounded by straw hat.




                                             158
• Dropped                     a                  bouquet.




• Remove the cake (white).




• Young escorting sleeps in their living
  room.




                                           159
For the second day of the wedding:

    • bridal handling in the morning.
    • symbolic objects to young housewife.
    • matchmaker hanging.



          …More about some Lithuanian wedding traditions…




        Groom with his flock and matchmakers on arrival at the bride's house the bride is
often concealed. In the past they checked the bridegroom go-between with the bridesmaids
and bride's hands and tried to identify the bride.




                                                                         160
Today, the groom are tied and he tries to find the flock of girls, and recognize his
bride.




         Youngs usually go toward the altar together - it is their common sign of life journey.




                                                                                 161
However, before young came to the altar, separately, each with its own entourage -
the younger bridesmaids and matron of honor, groomsmen and the young. Matron of
the young lays a white towel or cloth and a piece of lead on the young. A piece
of linen or towel is left to the priest.




         Waiting for the young guests in the courtyard: at the gate and the front door and
placed lights. They pluck out the red and white beets, and insert the candle inside.




           Now is popular to meet young with the gate-to-door shed light candles, lamps or
                                            ribbons.




                                                                               162
Table sat requests from guests gifts to the young. Only received gifts from, they give
a way to the wedding party table .Usually dressed “bride" is a man, "young" – a woman. Their
appearance and manners of conduct parodic purpose - to lead the audience laugh.




          Lithuania has traditional wedding cakes: karvojus and šakotis. Karvojus is baked for
special ceremonies and the decorations symbolized the bride's purity,wished wealth, fertility
and joy. Today not one, but several cakes are on the wedding table: a young, matron of honor
(karvojus), and sometimes – bridesmaids.

       Karvojus – the cake of matron of honor:




                                                                             163
Šakotis – a high branched hollow cake. One of the most
                                           common desserts is prepared for a wedding.




             On the newlyweds bed are laid new coated sheets and
a doll that means fruitful. The bag with in a loaf of bread says that
young life is rich. Young matron of honor escorted them to bed.




         Today, the wedding celebration is celebrated two days.




                                                                             164
Young also bring grain to the door and beat them , calling the metal pots, knocking
on the door to bridal.




            In the wedding morning, the newlyweds and their
guests before wedding breakfast wash themselves with water
that matchmaker brings.




                                                                Matchmaker role in both
                                                       the old and the modern wedding
                                                       isone of the most important. He is
                                                       the head of the wedding.




                                                                          165
Especially popular matchmaker "hanging"
                                                 custom. This performance, a go-between
                                                 for the accused and sentenced to hanglies.
                                                 The best way - to hide. Persons are
                                                 dressed    like   "Judges and Prosecutors“
                                                 Matchmaker        hearing,    announce      his
                                                 "testament", which distributes all of its
                                                 assets., the judge asks the brutality and
                                                 mercy. Matchmaker always "hanging"
                                                 ends the traditional: it saves the bride.




        Towards the end of a wedding
neighbors of newlyweds have brought a
number of older, unnecessary, broken farm
tools and old household items - a new start in
life.




                                                                   This is the tradition of
                                                      today's wedding. Available free of
                                                      charge one or a few antiques -
                                                      candlesticks, serving tools, and so on.




                                                                              166
The end…




           167
POLAND
PUBLICZNA SZKOŁA PODSTAWOWA nr 2 im.H. Ch. Andersena, Radom


       CHRISTENING IN POLAND




   NOWADAYS AND IN THE PAST




                                                   168
CHRISTENING IN THE PAST




NEW BORN BABY’S CRADLE




                          169
IN THE PAST NEW BORN BABIES WERE
CHRISTENED.THEY WERE PUT IN ‘BECIK’
(PHOTO BELOW)




                               170
CHRISTENING
CLOTHES




CHURCH CEREMONY WITH A PRIEST,
PARENTS AND GODPARENTS.




                             171
GODFATHER LIGHTS A CANDLE WHICH
SYMBOLISES JESUS LIGHT




GODMOTHER PUTS A ROBE ON A
CHRISTENED CHILD WHICH SYMBOLISES
INNOCENCE




                             172
SOUVENIR SNAPSHOT




PRESENTS




                    173
WEDDING IN POLAND
   NOWADAYS AND IN THE PAST

Engagement at the fiancee’s house. Fiance asks
fiancee’s parents for her hand. Fiance gives
fiancee a gold ring with a stone (symbolises
hapiness).




                                          174
Bridesmaid helps the bride to get dressed;
Best man helps the bridegroom to get dressed.




Beautiful brides




                                        175
The bride and the bridegroom’s parents bless
them at the bride’s house (holy water and cross)




                                         176
The bride and the bridegroom usually go to the
church by a beautifully decorated car.




In the old times they used
to go on foot or in a horse drawn-carriages.




                       The


                                          177
marriage ceremony. Priest conducts a church ceremony.
After the marriage vows the married couple give
themselves the rings (right hand , the ring finger)




When the ceremony is finished guests throw rice
or money at the married couple to bring them
happiness.




                                               178
SLOVAKIA
     ZÁKLADNÁ ŠKOLA S MATERSKOU ŠKOLOU ŢELIARSKA 4, Košice
                                    Christening
Pregnancy
        The destiny of a man was determined at birth according to folk thinking. The closest
relatives tried to foresee the most important events in his life from different accompanying
signs and circumstances.

       Therefore many practical activities were focused on a pregnant woman. They would
ensure the child’s happy arrival into the world, protect the health of mothers and take care
about child’s happy life.

         The woman who was pregnant wasn’t allowed to go to the field on her own, to cross
the field, to look into the well, to whistle and so on.




        When there was a red mark on the child´s skin, the origin had to be looked for from
the period of pregnancy. When a pregnant woman smelt a dish and could not taste it,
miscarriage would happen.

         Nowadays pregnant women still keep some superstitions or prohibitions. But since
children are born in hospitals, most of the rituals, superstitions or prohibitions connected to
childbirth have passed away.




                                                                             179
The birth of the child


        A midwife and a mother or the mother in law helped the young mother in labour. They
untied or unbound everything (hair, clothes) in the room that would help the child to come to
this world. When the husband was present, the pain would be divided between the married
couple.




        When the child was born, the accoucheuse (midwife) made a cross on his forehead
and looked him over carefully. When the child looked dead she slapped him to wake him up.
After that she prepared a bath from pea leaves and stems and oat straw. If the child was red
after the bath he would live but if he was pale nothing would help him.




                                                                            180
After birth they put the child on a sack of flour so he would be rich. They made a cross
on the forehead so he would be liked by everybody. They put different working tools into his
hand according to the type of job his parents wished for him: a prayer book to be pious and
wise, a pen to be able to write.

        For a boy a maul to be able to work, an axe to be a good farmer or a whip to be able to
drive horses, for a girl a wooden spoon to be a good housekeeper or a needle to be able to
sew. In some villages till today when some children are born they call neighbours to drink
some alcoholic beverages or eat cakes.




       The period of time in which the child was born was very important. For example it
would be unfortunate to be born at twelve o´ clock, whether at night or at noon. The child
born on Wednesday would be eloquent, born on Friday would be unfortunate, born on
Saturday and Sunday would be happy and rich. The worst day for birth was Great Friday, the
happiest and the luckiest day for birth was Christmas Eve. A child born in April would be foolish
and unstable, in May, when trees are in bloom, the child would soon turn grey. Increasing or
decreasing Moon helped to predict life expectancy.




                                                                               181
There were many predictions connected to the child´s appearance at birth. The child
born with a tooth would have the ability to predict the future. Hairs on limbs meant richness,
long hair meant short life. When his fists were closed he would be miserly, when his fists were
open, he would be generous. When the child was born screaming, he would become a merry
man who liked singing. A child with eyebrows grown together would have an evil eye. The
seventh son would have excellent abilities to heal people and grow trees.



The baby’s first bath


        Many traditions were bound to the baby’s first bath. So people put different items into
the bath and these items had properties which would enter the baby through the water. Very
often people put money to ensure wealth and enough money for the child for a life time. Then
they put holy water to the bath, for the baby not to be afraid or when it was a girl, they put
sugar to be sweet and honey to be loved.

         They believed that where they poured the water from
the bath had an impact too. So if they poured this water in the
garden on a red rose, the child would be nice and red. In „Vyšná
Lesná'' if they poured this water under a tree, the child would
grow up like that tree.




       After the bath they greased the child with fresh butter, smeared him with egg whites
and wrapped him into an old apron or into other old clothes, because old clothes fit better
than new ones. They made sure that the girl was wrapped up into male dress and the boy into
female dress. This was because the child would be liked by the opposite sex in the future.

       After these rituals they put the child on the bed at the mother´s right hand. They didn't
want the child to be left handed. In times when beds were made of straw, if the child caught
some straw in his hand by chance, they said he would be rich and a good farmer.

       The mid-wife continued giving daily baths to the infant until and including the
day of christening. However, the child's ears were not washed for six weeks for fear of
causing deafness. When the child was six weeks old, melted wax was placed into his or
her navel. This was done to prevent any infection of the navel.




                                                                              182
Breast feeding


        The child had his first breast feeding on the second day. He was fed firstly from the
right breast to avoid being left handed. When the mother didn’t have enough milk they gave
him diluted cow’s or goat’s milk. Mothers breast-fed their children traditionally up to one year.

        When mothers wanted to wean their children, they wore clothes in which breasts
were not noticeable. Mothers used to put salt, hot pepper, black pepper or nettle on their
breast to wean children. A piece of bread wrapped in linen was given to the child to be sucked.
On the day of his weaning they put different things on the table. The one he grabbed first
would determine his future: book or pen meant he would study, money or bread meant he
would be rich, rosary meant he would become a priest or be religious, an egg meant he would
be round.



Other rituals


        Until the child was christened, evil forces had power over him. The cradle was
sprinkled with holy water before the child was put into it. They covered the child´s face with a
diaper to protect him from bewitching. A red ribbon tied on the child´s wrist had the same
function (role). It was worn until the child went to school.




       Until the child was christened he couldn’t stay alone, because witches would exchange
him. For an exchanged child was considered each mentally or physically disabled child. The
mother had to treat this child gently, because the witch would treat her child likewise.




                                                                               183
Nappies were made from old shirts, for girls from man´s shirts, for boys from woman´s
shirts. It was not allowed to dry washed nappies out in the wind, because the child would not
sleep well. It was not allowed to wash 10-13-week-old girls´ nappies in the stream (brook),
because they would be mature too soon.




        In the past many children died within one year, so many superstitions were kept to
protect the child´s health especially in his first year.

        Salt and iron put into the cradle would protect from witchcraft (magic), a red ribbon on
the wrist would protect from bewitching.

        After sunset people were not allowed to take anything out of the house because the
child would not sleep well.

        When the mother crossed water with her child for the first time, she threw a piece of
bread into the water to ensure healthy sleep for her child.

         It was not allowed for the child to see himself in the mirror or to cut his hair within the
first year, because he would not learn to speak. Later cutaway hair was thrown on fire.

         It was not allowed to cut the child´s nails within the first year, because he would be a
thief. The mother used to bite off her child´s nails.

       When the child´s teeth started to grow, bread crust or bacon skin was given to him
to chew.

        Many boys born in one year meant war; many children born in one year meant a rich
year. The number of illegitimate childbirths predicted the number of youth deaths.



Christening


       In the past godparents were always friends of the married couple, but today they can
be brothers and sisters. Also a person that was single and over eighteen could accept being a
godfather. One wasn’t allowed to refuse an offer to become a godfather because „grass would
not grow for seven years“. Only pregnant women were allowed to refuse becoming
godmothers.

In the past christening was on the nearest Sunday from the child´s birth. If the child was very
weak, parents christened him as soon as possible. The godmother dressed the child before
christening. Girls were dressed in pink and boys in blue.




                                                                                  184
Money was put into a pillowcase by the godmother.

       The godmother carried the child to church to be christened.
Parents weren´t at the christening. The firstborn was named after the
mother or father.

        Godparents brought a long candle and an embroidered shirt
with the child´s name, date of birth and date of christening on it.

        The priest christened the child with holy water that he poured
on the child´s head. The candle was lighted at christening.




        When the godmother and the midwife came home from the church, they said “We
took away a pagan and have brought back a Christian.” and then put the child on the floor. The
father had to pick him up and accept him as a member of the family.




                                                                             185
Christening party


        After the christening there was a christening party in the parents´ house. A feast was
held after the christening and gifts were given to the child.

        The firstborn´s christening party was the richest.

        Guests brought gifts for the child. Traditional presents were money, clothes, later
earrings or necklace.

        During the party the midwife collected money from the guests for a bonnet or for a
pram.

       Some superstitions were bound to the christening party, too. When the collected
money was quickly counted, the child would speak early. Unfinished drinks predicted that the
child would become an orphan. If someone spilt a drink by accident, it meant an early next
pregnancy for the mother and also next christening. The next child´s sex was predicted
according to the first male or female singing at the party.

        Nowadays a christening party is an event for the closest relatives where gifts are given
to the child. And when the child is one year old, the godparents are expected to visit.



“Vádzka” - going to church or purification


        After giving birth to the child the mother stayed in bed for a week. If she stayed longer,
people would say she was lazy.
        The mother was not even at the christening. During the christening party she stayed
behind a corner sheet, because evil forces had power over her.
        Lying-in took usually six weeks. The mother had to stay indoors, behind the corner
sheet and watch her child in order that the child not to be exchanged by a witch. She had only
certain duties. The godmother´s visits were frequent; she brought light meals for the mother
behind the corner sheet.

         After six weeks of lying-in the mother went to church. She wore a piece of clothing
inside out, a piece of garlic and bread hidden in her clothes to be protected from the evil eye.
Before she left home, embers, a glass of water or an egg was put on the threshold to overstep
it and she stepped over them.
         The priest made some special rituals to purge the mother, so she could go back to her
daily duties. After church if she met a woman, her next child would be a girl, if a man, it would
be a boy.
         If a mother had more girls one after another and she wanted a boy, she had to put
different things into the girl’s bath, for example her husband´s hat and a rooster cock.
         When she came home, she had to sit on a bucket of water to have enough milk. After
going to church women returned back to their duties, often to the field.




                                                                                186
187
Wedding
Weddings in Slovakia, just like anywhere else, vary from region to region. In traditional
community, wedding was a very important event preceded by thorough preparations. People
slaughtered pigs, baked cakes and cleaned their houses.

        The wedding could be only in a certain time - during the carnival or after or before
harvesting, also after finishing autumn works, in Lent and Advent weddings were restricted.
Wedding days were Monday and Tuesday. Wednesday was a day of fast. If the wedding was on
Thursday, it had to finish by midnight, as Friday was a strict day of fast. No wedding could be
on Saturday because of not to be sleepy or drunk at worship on Sunday.




Before wedding


Intermediation and matchmaking of the wedding



         Matchmaking of children’s wedding was always a business of a mother or of a female
part of a family. Mother, her friends and female family members were looking for a good bride
for her son. It was the best if the both of young couple came from families of about the same
level of prosperity.

         After that, the mother and the son’s godmother did a little research in the house of his
future spouse. Then the talks between the future bride’s in-law and groom’s parents started.
At first girl’s parents were not completely willing to let their daughter to marry. They argued
that she was too young or so, but after all they asked her whether she wanted to marry. But,
this question, when the agreement was already set, was just a formality and was a practical
form of command.

        After the agreement, the girl with her family came to see the house and the farmyard
of her future spouse and his parents. The term of the wedding was settled immediately or
later. Most weddings were in the winter, so that the preparation would not interrupt the
agricultural work on fields and around the farmyard.



Engagement



         The engagement was done at the house of the bride. It was connected with feast and
the first exchange of presents. The “starejší” (mostly the godfather) talked about the marriage
and cited the Bible. Then the girl gave a scarf to his future groom, they shook their hands and
finally exchanged the wedding rings. This was a symbol of the end of their freedom.




                                                                               188
Banns



       On the following Saturday they met the priest to sign the intent of the marriage
so that the banns could be announced on three Sundays. Both Godfathers were
required to attend this meeting.
       On the following day, Sunday, at High Mass and after the homily, the first ban
was read and the date of the wedding was announced. After the names were read,
people were asked if there was any reason why these people couldn´t marry.
       On the third ban the bride had to wear new clothes at church.



Preparations for the wedding



        The preparations were the most intensive in the last week before the wedding. These
preparations were connected with many magic rituals and do’s and don’ts in order to improve
the future life of the couple.

       On Thursday, which was supposed to be a lucky day, women, none of them could be a
widow, came to the house of the bride and put some talismans into the eiderdowns. For
example, pigeon’s feather for love and faithfulness, some herbs, piece of sugar should protect
the couple against the spells and sorcery; coins should bring money and wealth. The
eiderdowns should not be banged, so that husband would not beat his wife and at the end of
the whole process they sat a little boy on the eiderdowns, that the girl would bear a son.




        On Friday, nothing except baking was done, because Friday was considered as a day of
bad luck.

        On Sunday afternoon, the bridesmaids came to the bride’s house and prepared her for
the ceremony. They made a headband for the bride and three corsages. The nicest one was for
the groom and the other two for the groomsmen. They also made button holes for family and
friends who would be gathering at the bride's home on the wedding day.




                                                                             189
Later bridesmaids started to invite the guests. The guests, as they came, brought
presents for example food and groceries for the wedding feast, wheat and grain for the bride.
The bride with bridesmaids sang a leave-taking song and danced.

        Similar ceremony was held at the groom’s house.




Wedding day


Bride’s clothing

        The bride was dressed by bridesmaids and the bride’s godmother. The dressing was
also connected with superstitions and magic rituals - the reversed under-skirt, bread, garlic,
and parsley – all these things should protect the bride against bewitching and spells.

        The bride was mostly in white and had black boots (if the groom was rich enough
because he bought boots for the bride) or shoes. She had three to seven petticoats. The top
skirt was from brocade and silk with rose pattern. The apron was white with flower pattern.
The bride wore a camisole with short sleeves (finished with a collar, pleated on shoulders) and
a bodice with elbow length sleeves on the top of the camisole. In winter she wore a blouse. On
the neck she had a necklace of beads called “pacerky“.

       Typical for the bride were her clothes and unique things – a headband or a wreath
which were the symbols of virginity. Veils were firstly used in the 19th century.

       Bridesmaids wore white kerchiefs in winter. They had embroidered white
handkerchiefs in their hand or a prayer book.




                                                                             190
191
Groom´s clothing

       On Monday morning, the groom’s godmother brought him a new shirt, a corsage,
cakes and distilled spirit.

       Men wore black shoes and socks. They wore a white shirt, black trousers and a jacket.
They always wore a tie or a bow tie. On the head the groom had a black hat with a branch of
rosemary.




                                                                            192
“Odpytavanie“

        When the bride was ready, she kneeled on a scarf and “starejší“ – Best man thanked
parents for bringing her up and being here for her, he told the bride to keep obeying her
parents and to ask them for a blessing. Her parents made the sign of a cross on her forehead
and kissed her. This didn’t go without tears.




         The leave taking at the groom’s house looked the same. Then the groom with his suite
went to the bride’s house and “starejší“ asked for her. When he was accepted, the groom with
his suite and the bride with her suite went to church.




                                                                            193
Before the marriage ceremony

        The groom (accompanied by his family and friends) went to the bride’s house to pick
her up before the ceremony.

        First in the procession was the groom with his groomsmen with sticks in hands. They
sang. Next in order were the single men, married men, single and married women. Somebody
played the accordion as they walked to the bride's home.

       Meanwhile a crowd gathered outside of the bride's home to view who was with whom
and how everyone was dressed. These on-lookers, too, were hosted outside of the home by
the women. The bride and her group waited outside the house for the arrival of the groom's
procession. Upon arrival only the groom, his Godfather and the groomsmen went inside. The
youngest bridesmaid gave the corsages to the groom, the two groomsmen and pinned the
buttonholes on the members of the wedding party.

       Then the procession went to church. They all left for the chapel singing. The marriage
was performed in a small chapel a short distance from the church. The groom and the young

single men lead the procession. Next the bride came followed by the others. The godparents
were the last in the procession.




                                                                            194
Parents of the bride and groom did not attend the marriage ceremony held in the chapel.

       Priest conducted a church ceremony. After the wedding vows the married couple
exchanged rings. The wedding ring was put on the right hand’s ring finger (now it is the left
hand).




                                                                            195
After the marriage ceremony

         After the marriage ceremony the married couple received the wishes for a prosperous
life. The godmothers gave out cakes to children who gathered near the chapel.

       Then the guests returned to the bride’s house. There were humorous wedding
customs before entering the house.

       Arriving at the bride's home the group stepped aside and allowed the bride and the
groom to enter the home first as husband and wife. The bride's mother gave them a teaspoon
of honey - the symbol of sweet married life.

        When all the people were seated they prayed. Meals were served by the Best men.
Wedding dinner traditionally starts with chicken noodle soup, where the newlyweds had only
one plate and one spoon and they had to feed each other. This symbolised sharing their life.

       At about 5 pm the bride left to go to her husband's home. After this the mother
greeted her new daughter-in-law and son and invited them inside. Sometimes the mother-in-
law greeted them with some humour. She said: "Come in my daughter-in-law. You will not be
required to do any work around here - only what I command you to do!" Again a teaspoon of
honey was given to the new couple. It was customary for the bride to bring gifts for the
groom's family. The mother received a head scarf, the father received a shirt and also other
members of the family received small gifts.




Act of removing the headband and “bonneting”



       Before the dawn, bridesmaids and bride’s godmother took the bride into the pantry.
The Best men removed the bride’s headband, put it up on a stick or sword and showed it to
the wedding guests. Then “starejší“ brought the groom in. The groom and the bride went to
bed and all the guests went to sleep.

       On the third day of wedding the most important act was promoted – the act of
bonneting the bride. In the morning the guests met at the house of the newlyweds to have rich
breakfast.




                                                                            196
After breakfast, the “main” bridesmaid and young girls from the village (not the
bridesmaids) made the bride a new hairdo and put a bonnet on her head. Now she became a
woman and they sang to her:

                                    "From (the name of the town or village) the wind
                                    blows,
                                     Already our bridal group is blown,

                                    Today a bride, tomorrow a woman,

                                    This evening she will be capped."




                                                                        197
The bride had to sit on a wooden bucket full of water, this should bring her fertility and
she should bear a son in one year.

       Then the Best men took the bride among the wedding guests. Now, she was a young
woman. After that she started to dance with the guests – the bride went from one hand to
another.

       In the afternoon the guests were welcomed by the young husband and wife. The Best
man with a plate stood next to the couple. Every guest had to congratulate the newlyweds and
put some money on the plate. The couple’s payback was a feast with music and dance.

       At the end of the wedding “starejší” thanked parents for the rich feast, guests for
presence and presents and gave everyone a piece of special wedding cake called “radostník“.




Dowry


        There were two kinds of dowry - the first was called “vybava“. Each girl started
preparing it as soon as she was old enough to hold a needle. She had to make clothes and
household textiles for herself and her future family, since once she married and the kids
started coming there wouldn't be much time for that until they grew up.

        The dowry was carried in a big procession from the bride's home to her new home and
everyone in the village had a chance to see her work. The groomsmen and bridesmaids came
to help and safeguard the moving. The young men arranged for a carriage and pretty team of
horses. The carriage was decorated with ribbons.

        The customary trousseau received from the bride's mother consisted of the following:

a chest with three drawers containing her folk dress, clothes, footwear and lingerie. Also 1 or 2
eiderdowns, 4 pillows, 1-8 sheets and 2 – 4 blankets.

        The party played the accordion and they all sang as they left the bride's former home.
The bride waited at her new home for the carriage and would show the unloaders where the
items should be placed. This finalized the wedding customs.

         The other dowry was called “veno“ - this was a settlement given by the family of the
bride. It was usually a property, maybe some cattle or a horse.




                                                                               198
199
Today´s midnight ceremony and the bridal dance

        An old Slovak tradition is that during the wedding ceremony and the following
feast the bride is wearing a headband or wreath called “parta” on her head as a
symbol of her purity and virginity.
        Becoming a young wife, just after the midnight, she has to take the wreath or
today more commonly the veil off. There is a great ceremony where women sing
traditional songs while taking the veil off the bride’s head.
        In some regions, the tradition is that the Best man tries to persuade the bride
to let him take her veil off. With a wooden spoon in hand he dances around the bride
and asks for three times: „I am asking you for the first time – will you allow to take the
wreath off or I will cut off your head?“ Twice the bride replies “cut off the head“ but
for the third time she answers „take off the wreath“. After the wreath (or veil) is off, it
is replaced with a beautiful hand-made handkerchief which symbolises the bride’s
becoming a woman. Then the bride leaves the reception and changes clothes, often
a traditional folklore costume or a red dress. She has a bonnet on her head.
        When she returns to the room with the Best man, everybody in the room
dances a special dance called “redovy“ with her. Guests give some money to the pot to
dance with the bride. As first the Best man dances, then godparents, parents, siblings,
parent-in-law and then other guests. The last person who dances with the bride is the
groom. During the dance a special song called “Redovy is starting” is sung.




                                                                          200
Other old traditions and rituals


”The purifying bath“

”The purifying bath“ was taken before the bride and the groom dressed up. It had to wash
away all impure and protect them from evil in their next life.




Dressing

       The wedding veil would protect the bride from the evil looks of strangers. It always
would be something red in the bride’s clothes to protect her from bewitching and magic.

      The bride wore an underskirt inside out in order not to be affected by the evil eye.
When the bride was dressed up, she had to stand at one place; she was not allowed to move.

       Small coins were secretly given into the bride’s boots to ensure her richness in
marriage. Dried thyme was put under the headband to give birth to healthy children.

        When the bride went to her wedding, she had to put some cloves of garlic and some
pieces of parsley into her boots to chase away the evil ghost. Apparently witches hated these
smells.




              Wedding tree




                                                                            201
An evergreen tree or a linden was prepared the last day before wedding. This wedding
tree was decorated by ribbons. There were three golden apples decorated by rosemary and
golden flax on the tree. This tree was a sign that the bride was having her wedding. The tree
had to be destroyed after the wedding ceremony because from then the bride became a wife.

       Sometimes the tree was burnt at the yard. As it was burning, groomsmen were singing
the song called “The linden was burning ...“




Carrying over the threshold

         The role of the groom is to carry the bride over the threshold of the house to trick evil
spirits that lurk under the threshold and guard the house.

        Another meaning is symbolic - it means the start of a new life.



Leaving the house

       When the bride left the house people sang sad songs, the bride beamed with her
parents and the groom had to pay for the bride to his parents-in-law.

        Traditions were kept there like the bride’s walking around the table, the bride’s escape
or the bride’s hiding.



Arriving at the new house

         According to folk thinking spirits seated in the fire, stove, on the table, in the threshold
and in the corners of the house. That is why the bride did various ceremonial acts in these
places. For example: she walked around the table, touched the stove and threw various things
into all corners of the room. The bride showed several acts that had to prove her skills, for
example picking up a broom.

         The mother-in-law gave a spoonful honey or sugar to the couple to ensure their happy
life. They poured water out of the house to ensure fertility and easy childbirth.




                                                                                  202
Bedding the newlyweds

       Witnesses had to be present during the ceremony. They put the newlyweds into their
bed. They usually did it in the groom’s house.

        Sometimes godmother put an axe under the newlyweds´ bed, bread and dry rosemary
into the bed or a piece of iron under their feet in order not to have bad dreams. When the
wedding bed was prepared, the eiderdown was smeared with drops of honey and money was
given under the pillow. Also a sack of grain was put under the pillow in order not to live in
poverty.

        The Best man accompanied the couple to their wedding bed. The married couple ate
certain food, for example corn, scrambled eggs, sweets or wine before they were put down on
the wedding bed.




                                                                            203
Other new habits


Sweeping of the broken plate and carrying the bride over the threshold

         The tradition is that a plate is broken, the bride with the groom are supposed to sweep
it up. This symbolises their cooperation and working together as a couple. Guests try to kick
the bits of broken plate around and make the cleaning up more difficult.

Some Slovaks believe that the bride has to be extra careful, as the number of broken pieces
left over will be the number of children her husband will have with another woman!

        After the broken plate was cleaned up, the groom carried the bride over the threshold
to her place at the table.




Common soup eating

        Newlywed’s common soup eating from one
plate at the feast symbolizes their cooperation.
        The second meaning, which is perhaps more
significant, is a common symbol of equal sharing joys
and problems in life.
        Before the wedding the noodles made of a
hundred eggs were prepared by women.




                                                                              204
Kidnapping the bride or stealing a shoe



                                       Another tradition is “kidnapping“ the bride
                               from the party (but it was not in the past). Male guests
                               from the bridal party often take the bride to a close-by
                               town or to the disco from the place of the wedding.
                               The groom has to look for her. Then he has to pay for
                               her release.
                                       Other times only her shoe gets stolen and the
                               groom must pay for it – with money or alcohol.




Kissing

       At any point during the wedding feast, the wedding guests traditionally bang
their glasses or plates with the cutlery and continue until the bride and the
groom stand up and kiss.
       This may be repeated several times during the wedding feast.




                                                                       205
SPAIN
            C.E.I.P. JÚPITER, San José de La Rinconada, Seville

THE RITE OF CATHOLIC BAPTISM
A Catholic Baptism have origins stepped in history.

For the Catholic baptism is the first of seven sacraments (baptism,
confirmation, eucharist, penance, anointing of the sick, holy orders and
marriage). This sacrament is intended to liberate human beings from the
original sin inherited from Adam and Eve to disobey God by eating the
forbidden fruit. After the baptism, human beings become Christians from
the Catholic Church. This person´s sacrament initiates to the Catholic
Faith into membership an makes him or her a member of the church.



HISTORY OF CATHOLIC BAPTISM

In the year 416, the Roman Empire made compulsory Infant Baptism. For
Roman Catholic tradition centuries taught that if a baby died without being
baptized, they would go to a place called limbo. However, in April of 2007,
Pope Benedict reversed this teaching on limbo. He also declared that the
church would not revert to St. Augustine´s teaching that who died without
being infants baptized go to hell. Instead the Pope created a new doctrine:
baptized infants go to heaven or not.

GODPARENTS

The rite of Catholic Baptism is more than a big celebration and party with
cakes and party favours. In the catholic tradition, Baptism makes take away
the sins and one child of God´s children and a member of the Catholic
Church.

In preparation for the Baptism service, Catholics parents take classes an
selected sponsors known as godparents. During the rite of Baptism,
godparents take part in the ceremony by holding the child and making
promises for the child´s spiritual growth.




                                                              206
Godparents are expected to watch over the child´s religious well being and
development throughout life. With that in mind, when your child selecting
godparents for it is wise to choose a person of:

      Deep faith
      Prayer
      Spirituality
      An active catholic.

TRADITIONAL DRESS

Traditionally babies wear white decorative christening gowns. Many times
christening outfits are passed down from one generation to the next.
It is customary to wear white child and sponsors are responsible for
dressing before the ceremony, place a scapular or medal of the Virgin in
the child's neck as a symbol of consecrated to the Virgin. The sponsors
hold a candle will be lit white during the ceremony (the candle can be
decorated and even engraved with the name).
During the ceremony of baptism, when the priest pours holy water on the
child's head is covered with a white cloth, symbolizing the purity acquired
through the sacrament. You can give the priest a shell with which pour holy
water on the child's head.




                                                             207
THE RITE OF BAPTISM

The rite of Catholic Baptism can be broken into four stages with each
different taking place in parts of the church.
Each stage symbolizes a part of the process of the child´s initiation into
the Church.



WHERE                   WHAT                     HOW OR WHY
In the entry way of the The questioning          It takes place outside
church building                                  the church symbolizing
                                                 the child is not that
                                                 yet a member of the
                                                 church.
Entry way               The exsufflation         The priest breathes
                                                 into the child´s face
                                                 three times recalling
                                                 the spirit breath of
                                                 God.
Entry way               The sign of the cross    Priest traces the Sign
                                                 of the Cross with his
                                                 thumb on the baby´s
                                                 forehead and the chest
Entry way               The    imposition     of Priest places hand on
                        hands                    the baby´s head and
                                                 prays for the kindling
                                                 of Faith.
Entry way               The imposition of salt   Priest puts a few grains
                                                 of salt on the baby´s
                                                 mouth as a symbol of
                                                 wisdom.
Admission    into   the The exorcism             The priest makes the
church building                                  Sign of the Cross over
                                                 the child three times
                                                 and prays for the
                                                 exorcise of the unclean
                                                 spirit in the name of
                                                 the Trinity.
Admission               The Sign of the Cross    This time the priest
                                                 traces the Sign on the
                                                 candidate´s forehead
                                                 as    a    symbol     of
                                                 protection of the mind




                                                            208
from       the    Devil´s
                                      violation.

Admission     The   imposition     of Again, the priest lays
              hands                   his hands on the
                                      child´s head.
Admission     Admission     in    the End of historical places
              church building         the priest´s stole on
                                      the     baby´s     head,
                                      symbolizing his priestly
                                      authority,     and    he
                                      admits the baby into
                                      the church building.
In the nave   The solemn exorcism     Now inside the church,
                                      the priest prays for
                                      the once again exorcise
                                      unclean spirits.
In the nave   The renunciation of Take a oath renouncing
              Satan                   godparents for the
                                      child Satan.
In the nave   The anointing           Priest anoints the baby
                                      with oil on the heart
                                      and     between      the
                                      shoulders tracing a
                                      small     cross.    This
                                      represents the oil of
                                      salvation    in    Jesus
                                      Christ.
At the font   The profession of faith The priest replaces his
                                      violet stole with a
                                      white one.




                                                  209
At the font   Baptism                    Godparents carry the
                                         baby to the font
                                         together.           The
                                         godmother holds the
                                         baby      while     the
                                         godfather places his
                                         right hand on the
                                         baby´s shoulder. The
                                         priest pour water three
                                         times consecrated over
                                         the baby´s forehead,
                                         baptizing in the name
                                         of the Father, Son and
                                         Holy Spirit.

At the font   The    anointing     with Anointing    with     a
              Chrism                    consecrated oil



At the font   The white linen clothe     A white linen clothe
                                         symbolizes purity which
                                         of the baby´s soul is
                                         cleaned, is placed on
                                         the child´s head.
At the font   The lighted candle         The priest gives a
                                         candle      to      the
                                         godparents
At the font   Last words of good will.




                                                   210
SPANISH WEDDING TRADITIONS


A wedding is a religious or civil ceremony, by which celebrates the
beginning of marriage . Generally a wedding is a rite that formalizes the
union of two people to a foreign authority that regulates and governs the
procedure, which generates contractual commitments between the parties.

The ceremony consists of several parts, which vary depending on the ritual,
the most common are: submission to authority (priest, judge, mayor, etc.)
express manifestation of the bride and groom to constitute the contractual
relationship and the exchange of rings .

Exchange of rings between the couple.
There are many traditions that suggest what to do at each stage of a
wedding, from its organization, dress, and the celebration to honeymoon .
Although today are changing many of these customs, being followed in many
cases only a few.

In the case of marriages between same sex , in force in several countries,
these practices must adapt to the situation, and let the tradition very
different roles to be played by the bride and groom.

"Something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue or
used." In the superstitious Middle Ages said that the wedding was good
luck to use:

      something old, to symbolize the connection of the bride with her
      past and represented the continuity of their marriage (used to be a
      jewel in the family);
      something borrowed, referring to the belief that happiness could
      bring a friend using something to be happy. It symbolized the
      friendship provided the loan for happiness (used to be a gem or just
      a tissue);
      something new, because it produced best hope for a future;
      something blue , and represented that color fidelity of the spouses .
      In superstitious peoples although the couple live together, the night
      before the wedding have to pass each one in your home or the home
      of their parents.

Throwing rice after the church ceremony represented the seed, the
offspring.

The groom should not see the bride and her dress before the ceremony.
The groom should wear properly tie on, as if carried crooked means that it
would be unfaithful to his girlfriend .



                                                             211
The colour of the wedding dress is a tradition

      White is the popular association, but originally the white bride's
      dress was a symbol of economic power and social status, since to
      obtain a white dress with the typical features of wedding dress, ie
      lot of material, quality, and demases ornaments, worth a lot and
      therefore was not readily available.




                                                           212
The tradition that the bride used touched on her wedding day comes
because in antiquity it was customary for the women wore a garland of
flowers.

Originally, the bride wore the veil as a symbol of youth. Catholic brides use
it as a symbol of purity. Because of this, sometimes the bride is chosen by
two layers to get to the altar veiled and the unveiled the groom when he is
given by her father or an immediate family if the deceased (such as a
grandparent).

The flowers represent emotions and merits, carry a message of fertility,
flowering and generosity. The superstition says that traps the lucky bride's
bouquet will be lucky and be the next to marry.

The carpet red is placed in the church at the entrance of the procession,
represents honour and respect.

The gifts are given to the bride and groom are usually designed to
facilitate new entry into the marital life, reason why it is common to give
away household items.




                                                               213
Today it has become popular creating wedding gift lists in order to
facilitate the guests and the couple selection of gifts, which to some
extent ensures that the couple will receive gifts that really will be useful .

The Wedding March is a traditional hymn played when the bride to enter
the altar or place of the ceremony.

For Catholic marriages, it is often a course requirement to participate in
marriage. These courses are led by priests and Catholic married couples
who work together as volunteers to guide the bride and groom - through a
regular meeting, in some cases the weekends, by evaluating the relationship
of the couple toward marriage and the commitments.




                                                                214
SPANISH
 WEDDING
  TRADITIONS
  C.E.I.P. NUESTRA SEÑORA DE AURORA, Alcabón




                                          215
Weddings are big affairs in Spain and you're likely to find the
whole extended family and the entire village turn out to celebrate.
Expect at least 200 guests at traditional weddings. Some of the
customs are similar,
such as throwing rice, but others
are less familiar.
In line with most social events in
Spain, most Spanish weddings start
late (often the ceremony won't
start until 7 p.m.) and finish very,
very late (or early, depending on
how you look at it).




The use of the mantilla as an everyday accessory goes back to the
XVII century, but the custom has been lost and the mantilla is now
sometimes worn by older generations as part of a costume or in
religious ceremonies. However, the mantilla is making a comeback in
modern times as part of a young bride’s wedding
attire: brides who want a traditional wedding are opting to wear the
traditional lace mantilla instead of a wedding veil. The


                                                      216
mantilla is exceptionally long and can trail several feet behind
her wedding gown.
A traditional wedding custom consisted in the groom presenting the
bride with 13 coins known as unity coins which represent his
commitment to support her. However, times have changed and today’s
brides and grooms exchange the coins as a symbol of the wealth and
finances they will evenly share.
In Spain, the wedding ring is worn on the ring finger of the
right hand.
Spanish weddings do not include bridesmaids or groomsmen. The
couple stands together at the altar with no one else in
attendance. There is no Best Man or Maid of Honor. Also, the
groom's mother accompanies him down the aisle. Bridesmaids are not
a traditional part of Spanish weddings, but with Hollywood’s
influence, they are becoming so. At the reception, the head table
is traditionally set for 6: the bride, the groom and their parents.
There are also no speeches.
Spanish weddings can be quite noisy with plenty of loud
firecrackers going off once the happy couple emerges from the
church. Rice is still traditionally used, along with flower petals.
During the wedding feast/reception, the bride and groom circulate
from table to table carrying a basket with small wedding favors,
that they personally hand out to each guest. The men will be
offered a cigar or a mini-bottle of wine and the women a little
present - usually something which looks and smells nice. This may be
the time in which guests also “hand back” the preferred wedding
gift: money… in envelopes. Some couples also send out the number
of a bank account along with the invitation.


                                                           217
The custom of cutting the groom's tie into pieces and then auctioning it
off for good luck is still actively practiced today by the groom’s
closest friends.
Days after the wedding, the newlyweds present theirMarriage
certificate- for a civil wedding or their marriage book - for a religious
church wedding in order to receive their Family Book where their
children’s birth will be recorded, hence the name, “Family Book”.




                                                             218
TURKEY
                          ORHANGAZI ILKÖĞRETIM OKULU, Istanbul

                                    WEDDING TRADITION

Marriage

Marriage is an association that existed since the earliest times and has great importance on
human life and society. Marriage as a term is a continuous union of a man and a woman as husband
and wife under all kinds of conditions of life. It is the foundation of the family which in turn is the
cornerstone of society and carries universal importance. The marriage act has certain rules and
patterns that change around the world, shaped by different cultures and entailing traditions and
customs that define a particular society.


Marriage ceremonies incorporate a number of preparations and phases leading up to the actual act.
These stages include religious and even superstitious practices. At each phase, the
implementation of a variety of common practices, customs and traditions have become
obligatory, almost like rules and principles that govern this ritual act. Each and every society, in
compliance with certain rules and practices conforming to their culture, has developed its own
particular ways of executing this event. Here we will try to elaborate on different phases of
marriage, complete with distinct and rich customs in every region, province and even village in
Turkey, by making an attempt to generalize them along main features and aspects.




                                                                                 219
Different kinds of Marriage:

In the past, marriage among relatives, such as cousins, was common in Turkey. Today such kind of
marriage is not practiced that much any more due to impact of urbanization.


Another kind of marriage is that in the case of death of a brother, where the widowed sister-in
law is wed with a single or widower brother-in law (Levirat). This is done in order to keep the
inheritance of the deceased in the family and for the children’s welfare. Similarly, it is also
possible that a sister gets married to a deceased sister’s husband (Sororat). However, this rural
tradition too is disappearing fast.


Another type of marriage is “taygeldi” marriage. In this marriage, the children from previous
marriages of a widow and widower, who get married, may get married as well. In the past,
particularly in rural areas, men would “snatch” or kidnap a girl that they wanted to marry, but were
not allowed to for one reason or the other, mostly due to objection by families. It also happened
that a girl and boy run away in mutual agreement to overcome family objection to their matrimony.
In some regions, there is also a type of “snatching” called “oturakalma”, where a girl goes to the
home of the man that she loves and settles there, many times at the objection of her own family.


Another type of marriage which was often practiced in the past is “beÅ¿ik kertme”. While children
were yet in their cradle, they were promised or “engaged” to each other by their families. In the
past, the rejection of marriage by the girl or boy once they reach marrying age, would be regarded
as dishonor to the family and even could cause bloody family feuds. This type of arranged marriage
is almost extinct today.


Another kind of marriage arrangement or custom in Turkey is marriage of “iç güveysi”. In this
marriage, a man settles in the home where his wife lives. Usually in case of inability to pay a
dowry for the bride or the absence of a son on the part of the bride’s family leads to this kind of
arrangement.


In another type of marriage called “Berder” or “deÄ¿iÅ¿-tokuÅ¿, deÄ¿iÅ¿ik” ( exchange,
changing) two families may marry their daughter and son to another family’s son and daughter.
Such kind of marriages releases the two families of an old custom to pay a dowry to the bride’s
family, since they “even” out.


A note on Baslik – dowry – is in place. This is an old custom that has nearly ceased to exist in the
vast majority of Turkish society and is confined only to very underdeveloped regions.


According to Turkish traditions marriage between “milk” siblings is not possible. Children who
are breastfed by a woman (a custom that was not uncommon in Turkey, when a mother could not
breastfeed due to illness or other reasons, especially in rural areas, but has nearly ceased today)
other than their mother become her “milk” children and they are not supposed to marry their
“milk” siblings.




                                                                               220
In some regions marriage with more than one wife at the same time (polygamy), while outlawed and
punishable by law, is still practiced and it was more prevalent in the past when a wife could not
bear children or she became ill or invalid.




Age of Marriage:

There is wide variation in marriage age today, with lower limits set by law. Today, men usually are
expected to marry after they complete their mandatory military service, in some more
traditional areas right before. General marriage ages are around 22 for men and around 20 for
women, with 5-6 years variation upward. Today, more youngsters go to college, which pushes up
their marriage age mostly until after graduation. Older siblings are usually expected to get married
before younger siblings, particularly if they are of the same gender. Pressures to marry at a
younger Although age of marriage varies according to regions today in areas where
traditions are observed.


In the general procedures of marriage, the groom to be and this family usually take the lead in
initiating the steps leading up to marriage, while the courted girl’s family remains passive. The
first step toward marriage is expected of the man and his family.


Act of go-between (Görücülük), To Ask a Girl’s Hand in Marriage:

In the traditional setting, the courtship process leading up to a marriage begins with seeing and
looking for a girl. Families who want to marry their sons begin looking out for girls, starting with
their relatives, neighbours and close friends. They get willing assistance in this “search” from their
relatives, neighbours and friends.


In larger cities of Turkey, where cultural changes have been more rapid, it is now most common
that people meet up personally and develop a relationship directly. However, “Görücülük” has




                                                                                 221
been still the main type of interaction enabling marriages is more traditional communities and
rural areas.


“Görücülük” is the act of go-between of several women of a family or friends of a man who wants
to get married, who pay special visit to the home of the girl who they see as a potential fit to the
man, to examine the girl closely and reveal their intentions. This procedure is called “seeing a girl,
to send women to see a girl, woman sent out to inquire about a prospective bride” (“kız bakma”,
“görücü çıkma”, “dünür gezme” in Turkish). After their affirmative judgment about the girl, time is
granted to the prospective bride’s family both to get more information about the prospective
groom and his family and to make a decision. As the result of affirmative agreement by both
families to pursue this first acquaintance further, the task of the go- betweeners (gorucus) comes
to end. Inasmuch as the fact that the work of seeing prospective bride is done by women, they do
remain engaged in the process of asking for the girl's hand.


In the process of asking for the girl’s hand in marriage, care is taken to include among those who
will visit the prospective bride’s family such respectful persons who could not be refused by the
bride’s family, together with close relatives of the prospective bridegroom’s family. It is not
uncommon that several such visits are paid to a family or girl who’s reluctant to agree to this
marriage for one reason or the other.




                                                                                 222
Agreement to Marry:

Agreement to marry (söz kesimi) follows the process of asking the prospective bride’s hand in
marriage. Both families who reached an agreement by way of “Dünürcülük” (women sent out to
inquire about a prospective bride) agree on marriage before crowded guests, which is called “Söz
Kesme” (agreement to marry). Engagement is completed by attaching a ring and an embroidered
kerchief bought by the prospective bridegroom’s family. In some regions “Söz kesimi” is also called
small engagement ceremony. Sweet dessert (aÄ¿ız tatlılıÄ¿ı) brought by prospective
bridegroom’s family is distributed to guests immediately after agreement by both parties to marry
their children. Even today in some regions the prospective bridegroom is not present at the time
of this ceremony. According to the attitude of the prospective bride’s father the bridegroom who
is present in the bride’s home and the prospective bride both kiss the hands of the elder guests.
Thus, the ceremony held for agreement to marry is completed.




Engagement

The step after the ceremony for agreement to marry is engagement. The engagement ceremony is
held in the bride’s home and the costs of the ceremony in some regions are borne by the
bridegroom’s family, but many times by the bride’s family.


After designating the     date    for   engagement ceremony an invitation called “invitation to
neighbors” is made. Guests who gather together on the day of engagement in the bridegroom’s
home go to the bride’s home. In the traditional sections of the community, women and men sit
separated in the bride’s home, and after having lunch, jewelry called “takı” is given to the bride who
is dressed in special engagement dress given to her by her mother-in law and relatives of the
bridegroom. In some areas the bridegroom does not come to the bride’s home. In this case
engagement ring is worn by the bride via a woman coming from the bridegroom’s home. In an
engagement ceremony where the bridegroom is present rings worn by the bride and bridegroom are



                                                                                 223
placed by an old man on ring fingers of their right hand with accompaniment of standard words
and wishes.


In many engagement ceremonies today, the ceremonies become more elaborate and modern,
where wedding halls are rented and men and women sit together, music, mostly live, is played and the
engagement is celebrated by family and friends of the prospective bride and groom.


No definite rule is imposed for the length of the engagement. Rather it depends upon agreement by
both sides. While it is considered natural that engaged couples may meet each other in more
modern communities, in traditional, rural communities, such meetings are allowed only through
the permission of the parents and usually a family members accompanies the couple. Breaking off an
engagement is considered a serious matter and is frowned upon in traditional circles. If the party
who broke off the engagement is the girl, all jewelry that she received must be returned to the
former fiancé. If the man broke off the engagement, usually his former fiancée keeps the
presents.




                                                                              224
Wedding:

Let’s note at the onset that the following information on wedding ceremonies pertains to older, rural
and conservative traditions in Turkey. Weddings today in the cities and more modern circles are
much more like western style weddings, with a wedding banquet or reception uniting family and
friends of the couple. Also, all marriages require a civil ceremony conducted and
recorded by a municipal officer to become legally effective. In many cases, the religious
ceremony precedes the civil ceremony by a few days.


In the traditional setting, wedding ceremonies generally start on Tuesday and end on Thursday, or
start on Friday and end on Sunday. Wedding expenses are met by the bridegroom’s family. Regional
variances aside, traditional weddings are marked by the following passages: Planting of a wedding
flag, an entertaining gathering for the women of the couple’s families on the night before the
wedding day, characterized by the coloring of parts of the hands and feet with Henna (Kına
Gecesi), fetching the bride, and the bride’s veil.


Before the wedding, as is done in the course of the engagement ceremony, formal invitations are
distributed and family, friends and neighbors are invited to the wedding. While the bride’s
family tries to complete preparations for the trousseau, the bridegroom’s family tries to
complete gifts for the bride to be presented to her before, during and after the wedding. A
wedding flag is planted by men coming from the noon prayer and friends of bridegroom at the
bridegroom’s home. In some regions, apples, onions, mirrors, etc. are placed on top of the flag.
Thus the wedding is officially underway.


Kına Gecesi:




A traditional version and perhaps precursor of the bachelorette party, the night before the wedding
is set aside for the bride to spent her last night at her family’s home in the company of women of all
ages who are close to the couple’s family. This ceremony get its name “Kına Gecesi”
– Henna Night – from the fact that the usually the hands of the bride is adorned with Henna. The
bridegroom’s female relatives too attend this event and are hosted in the bride’s home.




                                                                                225
Usually dry henna brought by the bridegroom’s family is broken to pieces in a silver or cupper
vessel by a woman whose father and mother is still alive, and not experienced otherwise
separation. After preparing the bride, a veil ornamented with red flake is placed over her head,
and she is brought amidst the guests accompanied by songs and hymns about henna. Hands and
feet of the bride are dyed with henna. The bridegroom’s side is under the obligation to put
money in the hand of the bride. Dying ceremony of henna is different according to regions. The
henna so dyed has such names and types as “iplik kınası” (henna for yarn), “sıvama” (smearing),
“kuÅ¿gözü” (bird eye). This ceremony, which itself can be a sad occasion, where relatives of the
bride, particularly her mother lament the departure of the daughter from her parent’s home, is
followed by joyous celebration, song and dance. After the guests leave, it is not unusual for the
closest friends of the bride to remain with her until the next morning, spending their last
“single” hours together. In some regions, a similar ceremony is held for the bridegroom by his
friends at his home.

Feching the Bride (Gelin Alma):

The next day is the day of “Gelin Alma” (to fetch the bride), “kız alma” (to fetch girl),
“gelin götürme” (to carry the bride), etc. Everybody is invited to this ceremonial procession
from the home of the bride to the home of the groom. Guests go to fetch the bride on foot if
not far, or by cars if too far to go. In some regions the bridegroom has not been allowed to
accompany the bridal procession. The procession is followed by drums and pipes. In some
regions the bride is prepared by elderly women (yenge) who help and attend to the bride. But
generally today the preparations for the bride are done at a beauty salon. Then she joins the
procession on her way to the groom’s home. Before leaving her home, a “Maidenhood Belt”
(Bekaret kuÅ¿aÄ¿ı), mostly a red ribbon, is tied around the Bride’s waist by her brother or a
close relative and then the bride says good-by to those who stay at home. To lighten things up,
the doorway is sometimes blocked by a male relative of the bride or a younger brother sits on
the wooden chest that carries the bride’s dowry, as to not allowing the bride to leave. A tip by
the groom’s family solves this final hurdle, and the bride leaves her parent’s home.

After traveling around the village, accompanied by drums and pipes, the wedding procession
arrives at the home of the groom. The bride and procession is met by the Mother-in law at the
front door, who welcomes the bride with a gift. Then the groom takes her by the arm and leads
her inside the house. After a while the groom is taken out by his friends until later in the night.
While away, he is shaved, bathed and dressed and taken to the mosque for the late night prayer
(Yatsı Namazı) and then he is returned home. The religious marriage ceremony is performed for
the bride and the groom who had returned to home accompanied by the hodja (preacher) of the
local mosque. After the ceremony is performed, the bride and groom are allowed to enter the
nuptial chamber.



                                                                                 226
Nuptial Chamber (Gerdek)




An elder woman in the nuptial chamber asks the couple to hold each other’s hand. The groom
performs his ritual prayer, and then opens the bride’s face after giving her a present to see her
unveiled face. They eat the meal offered by the bride’s family.


In traditional communities virginity is extremely important and proof of it is sought by
the groom’s family. This proof is usually the bed linen where the marriage was consummated.
An absence of blood on the linen can be cause for great shame for both families and may be
reason for the bride to be sent back to her parent’s home. Let’s note, however, that this too is
a very outdated procedure and not widely practiced today.




                                                                                227
The End...
   (by now!!)




                228

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Christenings and Weddings4

  • 1. LATVIA PAVILOSTAS VIDUSSKOLA, Pavilosta Will your love last forever? In Stameriena castle everything is peaceful and quiet, wooden floors do not ____doors are not _________and no ________are heard, hovever in the castle parc grows a strange tree. Vai tava mīlestība būs mūžīga? Stāmerienas pilī viss ir kluss un mierīgs, dēļu grīdas nečīkst, durvis nevirinās un nav dzirdamas nopūtas un vaidi, tomēr pils parkā aug dīvains koks...... Stāmerienas muiža Mīlestības ozoli Tas ir Mīlestības koks. Dvīņu jeb dubultozols. Nostāsts vēsta, ka pils dārznieks bijis iemīlējies baronesē. Tomēr neviens nav ļāvis viņiem precēties. Dienā, kad baronesi izdeva pie vīra, skumjais dārznieks stādījis pils priekšā koku, teikdams, ka tas zaļos tik ilgi, kamēr viņš mīlēs baronesi. Koks joprojām zaļo un ir skaistāks un pārāks par visiem citiem kokiem. Par šo mīlestības koku radies arī citāds nostāsts, ka cilvēks, kas spēs izlīst cauri ozola diviem stumbriem, iegūs mīlestību, kas nekad nebeigsies. Līdz šim gan tas nevienam nav izdevies, lai arī ir mēģināts. Varbūt tādēļ retajam izdevies mīlestību nosargāt? Kā cēlusies Gūtmaņala 141
  • 2. Lībiešu virsaitis Ringolds jājis karā. Mājās viņš atstājis skaistu sievu, piekodinādams, lai tā uzticīgi gaidot viņu pārnākam no kara. Sagatavot izdrukai Gūtmaņa ala Sieva gaidījusi, gaidījusi un tomēr kļuvusi neuzticīga. Kad vīrs atgriezies, sieva visu rūgti nožēlojusi un lūgusi piedošanu. Bet Ringolds nav piedevis. Viņš licis sievu dzīvu zemē ierakt. Tur pazemē raud vēl tagad joprojām nožēlošanas asaras. Avotiņā pārvērtušās tās iztek zemes virsū. Šis avotinš tecē Castle Rundale • Rundāles pils celtniecība neesot vedusies. Cik pa dienu uzcelts, tik pa nakti nogruvis. Viens no muižniekiem ierosinājis, ka vajagot ziedot cilvēku. Izvēlējušies nabadzīgu zemnieku meitu, un, lai būtu iemesls meiteni iemūrēt, apvainojuši viņu sagrēkošanā ar augstdzimušu princi. Kopš tā laikā meitene staigājot pa pili baltā tērpā – Rietumu korpusā šķērsojot biljarda istabu, tālāk dodoties uz ēdamzāli un tad uz pils Lielajām kāpnēm vai vestibili. Viņa meklējot muižnieku, lai pierādītu savu nevainību. • Rundāles pilī esot arī Melnā Dāma,kura parādās noteiktās vakara stundās un slīd cauri pils gaiteņiem, augšup pa kāpnēm uz Zubova kabinetu. Stāsta, ka Melnā Dāma bijusi kāda nabadzīga meitene. Šo meiteni bija iemīlējis Valerians Zubovs. Par Zubova mīlestību pret jauno un skaisto meiteni uzzinājusi ķeizariene Katrīna. Viņa likusi saviem kalpiem Zubovam nocirst galvu un pasniegt to zelta bļodā. Tas ticis arī izdarīts, bet meitene izgrūsta pa pils otrā stāva logu. Meitene no kritiena nositusies. Viņa nav apglabāta kapos un kopš tā laika klīstot pa pili, meklējot mieru. • Melno Dāmu esot redzējuši pils restaurātori. Viņa parādījusies no kolonnas, neko nerunājot, uzkāpusi pa trepēm, izgājusi cauri telpām un pēkšņi pazudusi. 142
  • 3. Turaidas 1601. gada pavasarī Poļu-zviedru kara (1600-1629) laikā zviedru karapulki ieņēma Turaidas pili. Pēc kaujas pils rakstvedis Greifs starp nogalinātajiem atrada dažas nedēļas vecu meitenīti. Greifs aiznesa meitenīti mājās un apņēmās viņu izaudzināt. Bija maija mēnesis un meitenīti nosauca par Maiju. Pagāja gadi un Maija izauga par daiļu jaunavu. Viņas skaistuma dēļ Maiju dēvēja par Turaidas Rozi. Gaujas pretējā krastā — Siguldas pilī — dzīvoja viņas līgavainis — dārznieks Viktors Heils. Vakaros viņi satikās pie Gūtmaņa alas. Tajā laikā pilī dienēja divi poļu armijas dezertieri — Jakubovskis un Skudrics. Jakubovskis iekāroja Maiju un vēlējās viņu precēt, taču meitene bildinājumu noraidīja. Tas Jakubovski tā saniknoja, ka viņš nolēma iegūt meiteni ar varu. Viņš aizsūtīja Skudricu it kā Viktora uzdevumā pie Maijas, lai viņa atnāktu ierastajā tikšanās vietā - bet neierastā laikā. Kad Maija atnāca un saprata, ka ir lamatās, viņa nolēma labāk mirt, nekā tikt apkaunota. Tas bija laiks, kad cilvēki vēl ticēja burvestībām. Meitenei ap kaklu bija sarkans zīda lakatiņš, ko bija dāvinājis viņas līgavainis, tādēļ viņa teica Jakubovskim, ka šim lakatiņam piemīt burvju spējas — tā nēsātājs tiek pasargāts no zobena cirtieniem, un aicināja to pārbaudīt. Jakubovskis sākumā vilcinājās, bet tad cirta no visa spēka un meitene saļima pie viņa kājām. Jakubovskis nobijās un šausmu pārņemts par izdarīto aizskrēja uz mežu un pakārās. Pievakarē Heils atrada Maiju alā nogalinātu un steidzās uz Turaidu pēc palīdzības. Pie alas tika atrasts Viktora cirvītis asinīs. Tiesa notika Turaidas pilī un tā lēma, ka slepkava ir Viktors un viņu notiesāja uz nāvi. Notikumu gaitu mainīja Skudrics, kurš bija sekojis Jakubovskim un visu redzējis. Viņš tiesai pastāstīja, kas bija noticis īstenībā un Viktors tika attaisnots, bet meitene apglabāta kapsētā pie Turaidas baznīcas. Viņas kapa vietu var aplūkot pie Turaidas baznīcas, Turaidas pils apkārtnē, Turaidā, Siguldā. Kokneses pilsdrupas. Ceļot pili kaļķa sajaukšanai ūdens vietā esot lietots piens, ko vajadzēja piegādāt apkārtnes zemniekiem. (2) ... Kādā no Kokneses pils pagrabiem glabājas veca nauda, ko te savācis Velns. Viņš pats naudu sargā, gulēdams uz lādes vai nu melna sunīša vai čūskas izskatā. (2) ... Kokneses pilskunga meita reiz iemīlējusies pils dārzniekā. Kad pilskungs padzirdējis, ka meita gribot precēties ar vienkāršu dārznieku, viņš meitu ieslēdzis pils augstākajā tornī. Kad dārznieks nav gribējis atteikties no meitas rokas, pilskungs licis to nogalināt. Meita pa torņa logu to redzējusi un nolēkusi zemē. 143
  • 4. Vēlāk viņu daudzkārt redzējuši sēžam Pērses krastā un uz akmens sukājot matus. Ja kāds pienācis tuvāk, meitene pazudusi. Ja kāds meiteni pamanījis un bēdzis, viņa skrējusi pakaļ veltā cerībā, ka ieraudzījusi savu mīļoto dārznieku. (2) Jaunpils pils Jaunpils pils ir viena no senākajām bruņinieku pilīm. Apakšējo stāvu mūru biezums pārsniedz divus metrus. Ir stāsti, ka šajās sienās iemūrēti arī cilvēki. Divi iemūrēti akmeņi pie pils torņa izmantoti lai uz tiem sēdinātu tos, kas kaut ko noziegušies. Zem akmeņiem bija asi dzelkšņi - kad noziedznieki vairs nenoturējās uz akmeņiem un nokrita, viņi tika smagi savainoti. Šādi cilvēki tika iebaidīti, lai viņiem nebūtu vēlmes dumpoties. Savukārt pilī iekšā ir slepenas durvis, kas ved uz pazemes ejām, kas iet uz baznīcu un uz Karātavu kalnu. 1905.gadā šīs ejas esot aizvērtas un vairs nav atraktas. Cēsu pilsdrupas. Zem Cēsu pils mūriem atrodoties pagrabi, kur esot noraktas visādas mantas. Vienā pagrabā esot liela dzelzs lāde, kas pilna ar zelta un sudraba lietām, bet uz lādes tupot liels, melns suns ar ugunīgām acīm un nelaižot nevienu sev klāt. No šiem pagrabiem ejot arī pazemes ejas. Reiz kāds nebēdnieks nokāpis pagrabos apskatīties. Pēc ilgāka laika viņš iznācis ārā pa smilšakmens alu, kas atrodas pils parkā. Pārdrošnieks iznesis lielu sidraba lukturi, bet pats palicis mēms un nevarējis nekā izstāstīt. (3) Jaunā Šlokenbekas un Durbes barona fon der Rekes dēls Matiass iemīlējis Šlokenbekas dzirnavnieka meitu. Abi slepus tikušies uz Šlokenbekas dzirnavu dambja. Barons tomēr to uzzinājis un bijis ļoti nikns. Tik nikns, ka paķēris bisi un auļojis uz ezermalu. Bijusi skaista 144
  • 5. mēness nakts. Abi jaunieši sēdējuši uz dambja malas, kad ezera otrā krastā parādījies vecais barons un gribējis meiteni nošaut. Lai nāve viņus neizšķirtu, abi saķērušies rokās un ielēkuši ezerā. Barons ļoti pārdzīvojis dēla bojāeju un licis uzcelt mazu piemiņas obelisku ar uzrakstu Matiass 1867. Šis piemineklis joprojām stāv iepretī dzirnavām, pašā ezera krastā. Jaunlaulātie bieži atrod uz to ceļu un nelaimīgo mīlētāju piemiņai noliek ziedu pušķīti. Noslīkusī jaunava Šlokenbekas muižā spokojoties. Viņu dēvē par Balto dāmu. (2) 19.gadsimta beigu pils īpašniekam Aleksandram fon Pistolkorsam un viņa sievai Eleonorai bija divi dēli un meita. Brāļi Ēriks un Maksis bija draugi, kas kopā mācījās Bīriņu pagastskolā un vēlāk - universitātē. Maksis devās uz Kaukāzu, kur 1911.gadā gāja bojā. Brāļa nāve satrieca līdz tam jautro un sabiedrisko Ēriku, kurš krita depresijā. Pateicoties radinieku rūpēm Ēriks pamazām atlaba. Ne mazums nopelnu tajā bija arī viņa māsas Renātes kalponei - jaukai un sirsnīgai meitenei. Ēriks un kalpone iemīlēja viens otru. Taču, kad Ēriks vecākiem paziņoja, ka vēlas precēties ar vienkāršu kalponi, viņa māte šādu iespēju nevēlējās pieļaut. Viņa nolēma apkaunot meiteni, lai tā atstātu muižu un, noorganizējot Ērika aizbraukšanu, atstāja viltotu Ērika vēstuli, kurā viņš it kā paziņo par savu aizbraukšanu un precībām ar citu - savas kārtas meiteni. Ērika māte nezināja, ka kalpone šai laikā jau gaidīja bērniņu. Kalpone neizturēja apkaunojumu un pakārās. Traģēdija aptumšoja Ērika prātu un 1912.gadā viņš pils parkā nošāvās. Stāsta, ka nelaimīgās kalpones gars pilnmēness naktīs klīst pa pili. Burtnieku pils Reiz vecos laikos pie Burtnieku ezera bijusi valdnieka pils. Valdnieks ļaudis mocījis ar darbiem. Bet te piepeši Burtnieku pils nogrimusi ezerā. Dievs parādījās valdniekam un sacīja: kad saule noies vakaros un rītos uzleks, pa to laiku viņš varēs iziet no nogrimušās pils. 145
  • 6. LITHUANIA KAUNO M. TADO IVANAUSKO VIDURINĖ MOKYKLA, Kaunas The Christening Traditions in Lithuania Once the Christening was one of the most important family celebration. When was it celebrated? If the child was healthy, it was waited for a few days, until he/ she became stronger, and then was carried to christen. If the child was in poor health, then one was christened as soon as possible. 146
  • 7. When the baby was born, people tried to christen him/ her as soon as possible, so why was there such a rush? Formerly, it was believed that the unchristened child was very unsafe. Fairies can switch the human child with their one. Or, something else bad might happen to such a child. The choise of the Name. Who chose the name for a child? The Christening - it is the introduction of a new, just-born person to the human community. During the christening he or she receives a name that describes a lot of things. How were godparents chosen? The selection of godparents is very important. If ones are invited to become godparents you mustn’t refuse without an important reason, because it is a very significant event. It was believed that singles couldn’t be godparents, because the child may never start a family. Therefore, the young godparents were invited because then, the child would be more caring about a job. Or already married people were invited but from different families. That is, one from the mother’s and one from the father's side. What are the responsibilities of godparents? 147
  • 8. Often, the godmother of a goddaughter became the matron of honor, and the godfather of his godson became a matchmaker. The godmother usually made up T-shirts and embroidered them. She also bought the necklase with the cross. Godfather gave money and all guests were favoured with sweets. What was the rite of the Christening? On leaving for the church, the mother of the baby whispered the name into the ear of godparents. Until christening ceremony nobody said the child's name publicly. After returning from the church, all ran to meet the godparents. The godfather offered sweets and announced baby’s name loudly. Then, the godmother gave the baby to his/ her mother and the godmother tried to unswaddle him/ her immediately in order the baby would be quick. At that time the guests were sitting at the table, and after a while, the child was shown to the guests. 148
  • 9. The Christening traditions now… Godparents are close relatives or family friends … 149
  • 10. Godparents take care of the child's christening outfits and a christening candle… T T 150
  • 11. The godmother dresses up the child before the Christening ceremony… The Christening ceremony in the church… 151
  • 12. Gifts for the Christening from godparents... A cross or a medallion. A silver spoon with the record of the child's birth date, time, weight and height. After the Christening ceremony, the parents invite guests for dinner... 152
  • 13. During dinner all guests play games which are prepared by parents and godparents… The Christening newspaper says the information about the child, the important dates in his/ her life. There are records of the christening name, godparents’ names, the christening date and location. Funny godparents’ promises are also appended. All guests write wishes for the child on the balloons. They are released into the sky at the end of dinner. 153
  • 14. The end... 154
  • 15. Wedding in Lithuania Lithuania newlyweds want to use the ancient feast of the wedding ritual items. Some of these traditions have survived a traditional wedding celebration, but most are adapted to today's needs and preferences. 155
  • 16. The main characters are parents blessing, parental consent with bread, salt and water, the arrival of young and family focus transfer. 156
  • 17. In the past, parents were in the house and waited for the returns of the young. It was a bad luck if parents would go together. These days parents take part in the wedding ceremony. Main wedding traditions are the following: • The young woman is carried over the bridges, and one of them is suspended with a lock. 157
  • 18. • Table redemption. • Young dance (waltz). • A young woman who is placed on the head scarf, and the young man surrounded by straw hat. 158
  • 19. • Dropped a bouquet. • Remove the cake (white). • Young escorting sleeps in their living room. 159
  • 20. For the second day of the wedding: • bridal handling in the morning. • symbolic objects to young housewife. • matchmaker hanging. …More about some Lithuanian wedding traditions… Groom with his flock and matchmakers on arrival at the bride's house the bride is often concealed. In the past they checked the bridegroom go-between with the bridesmaids and bride's hands and tried to identify the bride. 160
  • 21. Today, the groom are tied and he tries to find the flock of girls, and recognize his bride. Youngs usually go toward the altar together - it is their common sign of life journey. 161
  • 22. However, before young came to the altar, separately, each with its own entourage - the younger bridesmaids and matron of honor, groomsmen and the young. Matron of the young lays a white towel or cloth and a piece of lead on the young. A piece of linen or towel is left to the priest. Waiting for the young guests in the courtyard: at the gate and the front door and placed lights. They pluck out the red and white beets, and insert the candle inside. Now is popular to meet young with the gate-to-door shed light candles, lamps or ribbons. 162
  • 23. Table sat requests from guests gifts to the young. Only received gifts from, they give a way to the wedding party table .Usually dressed “bride" is a man, "young" – a woman. Their appearance and manners of conduct parodic purpose - to lead the audience laugh. Lithuania has traditional wedding cakes: karvojus and šakotis. Karvojus is baked for special ceremonies and the decorations symbolized the bride's purity,wished wealth, fertility and joy. Today not one, but several cakes are on the wedding table: a young, matron of honor (karvojus), and sometimes – bridesmaids. Karvojus – the cake of matron of honor: 163
  • 24. Šakotis – a high branched hollow cake. One of the most common desserts is prepared for a wedding. On the newlyweds bed are laid new coated sheets and a doll that means fruitful. The bag with in a loaf of bread says that young life is rich. Young matron of honor escorted them to bed. Today, the wedding celebration is celebrated two days. 164
  • 25. Young also bring grain to the door and beat them , calling the metal pots, knocking on the door to bridal. In the wedding morning, the newlyweds and their guests before wedding breakfast wash themselves with water that matchmaker brings. Matchmaker role in both the old and the modern wedding isone of the most important. He is the head of the wedding. 165
  • 26. Especially popular matchmaker "hanging" custom. This performance, a go-between for the accused and sentenced to hanglies. The best way - to hide. Persons are dressed like "Judges and Prosecutors“ Matchmaker hearing, announce his "testament", which distributes all of its assets., the judge asks the brutality and mercy. Matchmaker always "hanging" ends the traditional: it saves the bride. Towards the end of a wedding neighbors of newlyweds have brought a number of older, unnecessary, broken farm tools and old household items - a new start in life. This is the tradition of today's wedding. Available free of charge one or a few antiques - candlesticks, serving tools, and so on. 166
  • 27. The end… 167
  • 28. POLAND PUBLICZNA SZKOŁA PODSTAWOWA nr 2 im.H. Ch. Andersena, Radom CHRISTENING IN POLAND NOWADAYS AND IN THE PAST 168
  • 29. CHRISTENING IN THE PAST NEW BORN BABY’S CRADLE 169
  • 30. IN THE PAST NEW BORN BABIES WERE CHRISTENED.THEY WERE PUT IN ‘BECIK’ (PHOTO BELOW) 170
  • 31. CHRISTENING CLOTHES CHURCH CEREMONY WITH A PRIEST, PARENTS AND GODPARENTS. 171
  • 32. GODFATHER LIGHTS A CANDLE WHICH SYMBOLISES JESUS LIGHT GODMOTHER PUTS A ROBE ON A CHRISTENED CHILD WHICH SYMBOLISES INNOCENCE 172
  • 34. WEDDING IN POLAND NOWADAYS AND IN THE PAST Engagement at the fiancee’s house. Fiance asks fiancee’s parents for her hand. Fiance gives fiancee a gold ring with a stone (symbolises hapiness). 174
  • 35. Bridesmaid helps the bride to get dressed; Best man helps the bridegroom to get dressed. Beautiful brides 175
  • 36. The bride and the bridegroom’s parents bless them at the bride’s house (holy water and cross) 176
  • 37. The bride and the bridegroom usually go to the church by a beautifully decorated car. In the old times they used to go on foot or in a horse drawn-carriages. The 177
  • 38. marriage ceremony. Priest conducts a church ceremony. After the marriage vows the married couple give themselves the rings (right hand , the ring finger) When the ceremony is finished guests throw rice or money at the married couple to bring them happiness. 178
  • 39. SLOVAKIA ZÁKLADNÁ ŠKOLA S MATERSKOU ŠKOLOU ŢELIARSKA 4, Košice Christening Pregnancy The destiny of a man was determined at birth according to folk thinking. The closest relatives tried to foresee the most important events in his life from different accompanying signs and circumstances. Therefore many practical activities were focused on a pregnant woman. They would ensure the child’s happy arrival into the world, protect the health of mothers and take care about child’s happy life. The woman who was pregnant wasn’t allowed to go to the field on her own, to cross the field, to look into the well, to whistle and so on. When there was a red mark on the child´s skin, the origin had to be looked for from the period of pregnancy. When a pregnant woman smelt a dish and could not taste it, miscarriage would happen. Nowadays pregnant women still keep some superstitions or prohibitions. But since children are born in hospitals, most of the rituals, superstitions or prohibitions connected to childbirth have passed away. 179
  • 40. The birth of the child A midwife and a mother or the mother in law helped the young mother in labour. They untied or unbound everything (hair, clothes) in the room that would help the child to come to this world. When the husband was present, the pain would be divided between the married couple. When the child was born, the accoucheuse (midwife) made a cross on his forehead and looked him over carefully. When the child looked dead she slapped him to wake him up. After that she prepared a bath from pea leaves and stems and oat straw. If the child was red after the bath he would live but if he was pale nothing would help him. 180
  • 41. After birth they put the child on a sack of flour so he would be rich. They made a cross on the forehead so he would be liked by everybody. They put different working tools into his hand according to the type of job his parents wished for him: a prayer book to be pious and wise, a pen to be able to write. For a boy a maul to be able to work, an axe to be a good farmer or a whip to be able to drive horses, for a girl a wooden spoon to be a good housekeeper or a needle to be able to sew. In some villages till today when some children are born they call neighbours to drink some alcoholic beverages or eat cakes. The period of time in which the child was born was very important. For example it would be unfortunate to be born at twelve o´ clock, whether at night or at noon. The child born on Wednesday would be eloquent, born on Friday would be unfortunate, born on Saturday and Sunday would be happy and rich. The worst day for birth was Great Friday, the happiest and the luckiest day for birth was Christmas Eve. A child born in April would be foolish and unstable, in May, when trees are in bloom, the child would soon turn grey. Increasing or decreasing Moon helped to predict life expectancy. 181
  • 42. There were many predictions connected to the child´s appearance at birth. The child born with a tooth would have the ability to predict the future. Hairs on limbs meant richness, long hair meant short life. When his fists were closed he would be miserly, when his fists were open, he would be generous. When the child was born screaming, he would become a merry man who liked singing. A child with eyebrows grown together would have an evil eye. The seventh son would have excellent abilities to heal people and grow trees. The baby’s first bath Many traditions were bound to the baby’s first bath. So people put different items into the bath and these items had properties which would enter the baby through the water. Very often people put money to ensure wealth and enough money for the child for a life time. Then they put holy water to the bath, for the baby not to be afraid or when it was a girl, they put sugar to be sweet and honey to be loved. They believed that where they poured the water from the bath had an impact too. So if they poured this water in the garden on a red rose, the child would be nice and red. In „Vyšná Lesná'' if they poured this water under a tree, the child would grow up like that tree. After the bath they greased the child with fresh butter, smeared him with egg whites and wrapped him into an old apron or into other old clothes, because old clothes fit better than new ones. They made sure that the girl was wrapped up into male dress and the boy into female dress. This was because the child would be liked by the opposite sex in the future. After these rituals they put the child on the bed at the mother´s right hand. They didn't want the child to be left handed. In times when beds were made of straw, if the child caught some straw in his hand by chance, they said he would be rich and a good farmer. The mid-wife continued giving daily baths to the infant until and including the day of christening. However, the child's ears were not washed for six weeks for fear of causing deafness. When the child was six weeks old, melted wax was placed into his or her navel. This was done to prevent any infection of the navel. 182
  • 43. Breast feeding The child had his first breast feeding on the second day. He was fed firstly from the right breast to avoid being left handed. When the mother didn’t have enough milk they gave him diluted cow’s or goat’s milk. Mothers breast-fed their children traditionally up to one year. When mothers wanted to wean their children, they wore clothes in which breasts were not noticeable. Mothers used to put salt, hot pepper, black pepper or nettle on their breast to wean children. A piece of bread wrapped in linen was given to the child to be sucked. On the day of his weaning they put different things on the table. The one he grabbed first would determine his future: book or pen meant he would study, money or bread meant he would be rich, rosary meant he would become a priest or be religious, an egg meant he would be round. Other rituals Until the child was christened, evil forces had power over him. The cradle was sprinkled with holy water before the child was put into it. They covered the child´s face with a diaper to protect him from bewitching. A red ribbon tied on the child´s wrist had the same function (role). It was worn until the child went to school. Until the child was christened he couldn’t stay alone, because witches would exchange him. For an exchanged child was considered each mentally or physically disabled child. The mother had to treat this child gently, because the witch would treat her child likewise. 183
  • 44. Nappies were made from old shirts, for girls from man´s shirts, for boys from woman´s shirts. It was not allowed to dry washed nappies out in the wind, because the child would not sleep well. It was not allowed to wash 10-13-week-old girls´ nappies in the stream (brook), because they would be mature too soon. In the past many children died within one year, so many superstitions were kept to protect the child´s health especially in his first year. Salt and iron put into the cradle would protect from witchcraft (magic), a red ribbon on the wrist would protect from bewitching. After sunset people were not allowed to take anything out of the house because the child would not sleep well. When the mother crossed water with her child for the first time, she threw a piece of bread into the water to ensure healthy sleep for her child. It was not allowed for the child to see himself in the mirror or to cut his hair within the first year, because he would not learn to speak. Later cutaway hair was thrown on fire. It was not allowed to cut the child´s nails within the first year, because he would be a thief. The mother used to bite off her child´s nails. When the child´s teeth started to grow, bread crust or bacon skin was given to him to chew. Many boys born in one year meant war; many children born in one year meant a rich year. The number of illegitimate childbirths predicted the number of youth deaths. Christening In the past godparents were always friends of the married couple, but today they can be brothers and sisters. Also a person that was single and over eighteen could accept being a godfather. One wasn’t allowed to refuse an offer to become a godfather because „grass would not grow for seven years“. Only pregnant women were allowed to refuse becoming godmothers. In the past christening was on the nearest Sunday from the child´s birth. If the child was very weak, parents christened him as soon as possible. The godmother dressed the child before christening. Girls were dressed in pink and boys in blue. 184
  • 45. Money was put into a pillowcase by the godmother. The godmother carried the child to church to be christened. Parents weren´t at the christening. The firstborn was named after the mother or father. Godparents brought a long candle and an embroidered shirt with the child´s name, date of birth and date of christening on it. The priest christened the child with holy water that he poured on the child´s head. The candle was lighted at christening. When the godmother and the midwife came home from the church, they said “We took away a pagan and have brought back a Christian.” and then put the child on the floor. The father had to pick him up and accept him as a member of the family. 185
  • 46. Christening party After the christening there was a christening party in the parents´ house. A feast was held after the christening and gifts were given to the child. The firstborn´s christening party was the richest. Guests brought gifts for the child. Traditional presents were money, clothes, later earrings or necklace. During the party the midwife collected money from the guests for a bonnet or for a pram. Some superstitions were bound to the christening party, too. When the collected money was quickly counted, the child would speak early. Unfinished drinks predicted that the child would become an orphan. If someone spilt a drink by accident, it meant an early next pregnancy for the mother and also next christening. The next child´s sex was predicted according to the first male or female singing at the party. Nowadays a christening party is an event for the closest relatives where gifts are given to the child. And when the child is one year old, the godparents are expected to visit. “Vádzka” - going to church or purification After giving birth to the child the mother stayed in bed for a week. If she stayed longer, people would say she was lazy. The mother was not even at the christening. During the christening party she stayed behind a corner sheet, because evil forces had power over her. Lying-in took usually six weeks. The mother had to stay indoors, behind the corner sheet and watch her child in order that the child not to be exchanged by a witch. She had only certain duties. The godmother´s visits were frequent; she brought light meals for the mother behind the corner sheet. After six weeks of lying-in the mother went to church. She wore a piece of clothing inside out, a piece of garlic and bread hidden in her clothes to be protected from the evil eye. Before she left home, embers, a glass of water or an egg was put on the threshold to overstep it and she stepped over them. The priest made some special rituals to purge the mother, so she could go back to her daily duties. After church if she met a woman, her next child would be a girl, if a man, it would be a boy. If a mother had more girls one after another and she wanted a boy, she had to put different things into the girl’s bath, for example her husband´s hat and a rooster cock. When she came home, she had to sit on a bucket of water to have enough milk. After going to church women returned back to their duties, often to the field. 186
  • 47. 187
  • 48. Wedding Weddings in Slovakia, just like anywhere else, vary from region to region. In traditional community, wedding was a very important event preceded by thorough preparations. People slaughtered pigs, baked cakes and cleaned their houses. The wedding could be only in a certain time - during the carnival or after or before harvesting, also after finishing autumn works, in Lent and Advent weddings were restricted. Wedding days were Monday and Tuesday. Wednesday was a day of fast. If the wedding was on Thursday, it had to finish by midnight, as Friday was a strict day of fast. No wedding could be on Saturday because of not to be sleepy or drunk at worship on Sunday. Before wedding Intermediation and matchmaking of the wedding Matchmaking of children’s wedding was always a business of a mother or of a female part of a family. Mother, her friends and female family members were looking for a good bride for her son. It was the best if the both of young couple came from families of about the same level of prosperity. After that, the mother and the son’s godmother did a little research in the house of his future spouse. Then the talks between the future bride’s in-law and groom’s parents started. At first girl’s parents were not completely willing to let their daughter to marry. They argued that she was too young or so, but after all they asked her whether she wanted to marry. But, this question, when the agreement was already set, was just a formality and was a practical form of command. After the agreement, the girl with her family came to see the house and the farmyard of her future spouse and his parents. The term of the wedding was settled immediately or later. Most weddings were in the winter, so that the preparation would not interrupt the agricultural work on fields and around the farmyard. Engagement The engagement was done at the house of the bride. It was connected with feast and the first exchange of presents. The “starejší” (mostly the godfather) talked about the marriage and cited the Bible. Then the girl gave a scarf to his future groom, they shook their hands and finally exchanged the wedding rings. This was a symbol of the end of their freedom. 188
  • 49. Banns On the following Saturday they met the priest to sign the intent of the marriage so that the banns could be announced on three Sundays. Both Godfathers were required to attend this meeting. On the following day, Sunday, at High Mass and after the homily, the first ban was read and the date of the wedding was announced. After the names were read, people were asked if there was any reason why these people couldn´t marry. On the third ban the bride had to wear new clothes at church. Preparations for the wedding The preparations were the most intensive in the last week before the wedding. These preparations were connected with many magic rituals and do’s and don’ts in order to improve the future life of the couple. On Thursday, which was supposed to be a lucky day, women, none of them could be a widow, came to the house of the bride and put some talismans into the eiderdowns. For example, pigeon’s feather for love and faithfulness, some herbs, piece of sugar should protect the couple against the spells and sorcery; coins should bring money and wealth. The eiderdowns should not be banged, so that husband would not beat his wife and at the end of the whole process they sat a little boy on the eiderdowns, that the girl would bear a son. On Friday, nothing except baking was done, because Friday was considered as a day of bad luck. On Sunday afternoon, the bridesmaids came to the bride’s house and prepared her for the ceremony. They made a headband for the bride and three corsages. The nicest one was for the groom and the other two for the groomsmen. They also made button holes for family and friends who would be gathering at the bride's home on the wedding day. 189
  • 50. Later bridesmaids started to invite the guests. The guests, as they came, brought presents for example food and groceries for the wedding feast, wheat and grain for the bride. The bride with bridesmaids sang a leave-taking song and danced. Similar ceremony was held at the groom’s house. Wedding day Bride’s clothing The bride was dressed by bridesmaids and the bride’s godmother. The dressing was also connected with superstitions and magic rituals - the reversed under-skirt, bread, garlic, and parsley – all these things should protect the bride against bewitching and spells. The bride was mostly in white and had black boots (if the groom was rich enough because he bought boots for the bride) or shoes. She had three to seven petticoats. The top skirt was from brocade and silk with rose pattern. The apron was white with flower pattern. The bride wore a camisole with short sleeves (finished with a collar, pleated on shoulders) and a bodice with elbow length sleeves on the top of the camisole. In winter she wore a blouse. On the neck she had a necklace of beads called “pacerky“. Typical for the bride were her clothes and unique things – a headband or a wreath which were the symbols of virginity. Veils were firstly used in the 19th century. Bridesmaids wore white kerchiefs in winter. They had embroidered white handkerchiefs in their hand or a prayer book. 190
  • 51. 191
  • 52. Groom´s clothing On Monday morning, the groom’s godmother brought him a new shirt, a corsage, cakes and distilled spirit. Men wore black shoes and socks. They wore a white shirt, black trousers and a jacket. They always wore a tie or a bow tie. On the head the groom had a black hat with a branch of rosemary. 192
  • 53. “Odpytavanie“ When the bride was ready, she kneeled on a scarf and “starejší“ – Best man thanked parents for bringing her up and being here for her, he told the bride to keep obeying her parents and to ask them for a blessing. Her parents made the sign of a cross on her forehead and kissed her. This didn’t go without tears. The leave taking at the groom’s house looked the same. Then the groom with his suite went to the bride’s house and “starejší“ asked for her. When he was accepted, the groom with his suite and the bride with her suite went to church. 193
  • 54. Before the marriage ceremony The groom (accompanied by his family and friends) went to the bride’s house to pick her up before the ceremony. First in the procession was the groom with his groomsmen with sticks in hands. They sang. Next in order were the single men, married men, single and married women. Somebody played the accordion as they walked to the bride's home. Meanwhile a crowd gathered outside of the bride's home to view who was with whom and how everyone was dressed. These on-lookers, too, were hosted outside of the home by the women. The bride and her group waited outside the house for the arrival of the groom's procession. Upon arrival only the groom, his Godfather and the groomsmen went inside. The youngest bridesmaid gave the corsages to the groom, the two groomsmen and pinned the buttonholes on the members of the wedding party. Then the procession went to church. They all left for the chapel singing. The marriage was performed in a small chapel a short distance from the church. The groom and the young single men lead the procession. Next the bride came followed by the others. The godparents were the last in the procession. 194
  • 55. Parents of the bride and groom did not attend the marriage ceremony held in the chapel. Priest conducted a church ceremony. After the wedding vows the married couple exchanged rings. The wedding ring was put on the right hand’s ring finger (now it is the left hand). 195
  • 56. After the marriage ceremony After the marriage ceremony the married couple received the wishes for a prosperous life. The godmothers gave out cakes to children who gathered near the chapel. Then the guests returned to the bride’s house. There were humorous wedding customs before entering the house. Arriving at the bride's home the group stepped aside and allowed the bride and the groom to enter the home first as husband and wife. The bride's mother gave them a teaspoon of honey - the symbol of sweet married life. When all the people were seated they prayed. Meals were served by the Best men. Wedding dinner traditionally starts with chicken noodle soup, where the newlyweds had only one plate and one spoon and they had to feed each other. This symbolised sharing their life. At about 5 pm the bride left to go to her husband's home. After this the mother greeted her new daughter-in-law and son and invited them inside. Sometimes the mother-in- law greeted them with some humour. She said: "Come in my daughter-in-law. You will not be required to do any work around here - only what I command you to do!" Again a teaspoon of honey was given to the new couple. It was customary for the bride to bring gifts for the groom's family. The mother received a head scarf, the father received a shirt and also other members of the family received small gifts. Act of removing the headband and “bonneting” Before the dawn, bridesmaids and bride’s godmother took the bride into the pantry. The Best men removed the bride’s headband, put it up on a stick or sword and showed it to the wedding guests. Then “starejší“ brought the groom in. The groom and the bride went to bed and all the guests went to sleep. On the third day of wedding the most important act was promoted – the act of bonneting the bride. In the morning the guests met at the house of the newlyweds to have rich breakfast. 196
  • 57. After breakfast, the “main” bridesmaid and young girls from the village (not the bridesmaids) made the bride a new hairdo and put a bonnet on her head. Now she became a woman and they sang to her: "From (the name of the town or village) the wind blows, Already our bridal group is blown, Today a bride, tomorrow a woman, This evening she will be capped." 197
  • 58. The bride had to sit on a wooden bucket full of water, this should bring her fertility and she should bear a son in one year. Then the Best men took the bride among the wedding guests. Now, she was a young woman. After that she started to dance with the guests – the bride went from one hand to another. In the afternoon the guests were welcomed by the young husband and wife. The Best man with a plate stood next to the couple. Every guest had to congratulate the newlyweds and put some money on the plate. The couple’s payback was a feast with music and dance. At the end of the wedding “starejší” thanked parents for the rich feast, guests for presence and presents and gave everyone a piece of special wedding cake called “radostník“. Dowry There were two kinds of dowry - the first was called “vybava“. Each girl started preparing it as soon as she was old enough to hold a needle. She had to make clothes and household textiles for herself and her future family, since once she married and the kids started coming there wouldn't be much time for that until they grew up. The dowry was carried in a big procession from the bride's home to her new home and everyone in the village had a chance to see her work. The groomsmen and bridesmaids came to help and safeguard the moving. The young men arranged for a carriage and pretty team of horses. The carriage was decorated with ribbons. The customary trousseau received from the bride's mother consisted of the following: a chest with three drawers containing her folk dress, clothes, footwear and lingerie. Also 1 or 2 eiderdowns, 4 pillows, 1-8 sheets and 2 – 4 blankets. The party played the accordion and they all sang as they left the bride's former home. The bride waited at her new home for the carriage and would show the unloaders where the items should be placed. This finalized the wedding customs. The other dowry was called “veno“ - this was a settlement given by the family of the bride. It was usually a property, maybe some cattle or a horse. 198
  • 59. 199
  • 60. Today´s midnight ceremony and the bridal dance An old Slovak tradition is that during the wedding ceremony and the following feast the bride is wearing a headband or wreath called “parta” on her head as a symbol of her purity and virginity. Becoming a young wife, just after the midnight, she has to take the wreath or today more commonly the veil off. There is a great ceremony where women sing traditional songs while taking the veil off the bride’s head. In some regions, the tradition is that the Best man tries to persuade the bride to let him take her veil off. With a wooden spoon in hand he dances around the bride and asks for three times: „I am asking you for the first time – will you allow to take the wreath off or I will cut off your head?“ Twice the bride replies “cut off the head“ but for the third time she answers „take off the wreath“. After the wreath (or veil) is off, it is replaced with a beautiful hand-made handkerchief which symbolises the bride’s becoming a woman. Then the bride leaves the reception and changes clothes, often a traditional folklore costume or a red dress. She has a bonnet on her head. When she returns to the room with the Best man, everybody in the room dances a special dance called “redovy“ with her. Guests give some money to the pot to dance with the bride. As first the Best man dances, then godparents, parents, siblings, parent-in-law and then other guests. The last person who dances with the bride is the groom. During the dance a special song called “Redovy is starting” is sung. 200
  • 61. Other old traditions and rituals ”The purifying bath“ ”The purifying bath“ was taken before the bride and the groom dressed up. It had to wash away all impure and protect them from evil in their next life. Dressing The wedding veil would protect the bride from the evil looks of strangers. It always would be something red in the bride’s clothes to protect her from bewitching and magic. The bride wore an underskirt inside out in order not to be affected by the evil eye. When the bride was dressed up, she had to stand at one place; she was not allowed to move. Small coins were secretly given into the bride’s boots to ensure her richness in marriage. Dried thyme was put under the headband to give birth to healthy children. When the bride went to her wedding, she had to put some cloves of garlic and some pieces of parsley into her boots to chase away the evil ghost. Apparently witches hated these smells. Wedding tree 201
  • 62. An evergreen tree or a linden was prepared the last day before wedding. This wedding tree was decorated by ribbons. There were three golden apples decorated by rosemary and golden flax on the tree. This tree was a sign that the bride was having her wedding. The tree had to be destroyed after the wedding ceremony because from then the bride became a wife. Sometimes the tree was burnt at the yard. As it was burning, groomsmen were singing the song called “The linden was burning ...“ Carrying over the threshold The role of the groom is to carry the bride over the threshold of the house to trick evil spirits that lurk under the threshold and guard the house. Another meaning is symbolic - it means the start of a new life. Leaving the house When the bride left the house people sang sad songs, the bride beamed with her parents and the groom had to pay for the bride to his parents-in-law. Traditions were kept there like the bride’s walking around the table, the bride’s escape or the bride’s hiding. Arriving at the new house According to folk thinking spirits seated in the fire, stove, on the table, in the threshold and in the corners of the house. That is why the bride did various ceremonial acts in these places. For example: she walked around the table, touched the stove and threw various things into all corners of the room. The bride showed several acts that had to prove her skills, for example picking up a broom. The mother-in-law gave a spoonful honey or sugar to the couple to ensure their happy life. They poured water out of the house to ensure fertility and easy childbirth. 202
  • 63. Bedding the newlyweds Witnesses had to be present during the ceremony. They put the newlyweds into their bed. They usually did it in the groom’s house. Sometimes godmother put an axe under the newlyweds´ bed, bread and dry rosemary into the bed or a piece of iron under their feet in order not to have bad dreams. When the wedding bed was prepared, the eiderdown was smeared with drops of honey and money was given under the pillow. Also a sack of grain was put under the pillow in order not to live in poverty. The Best man accompanied the couple to their wedding bed. The married couple ate certain food, for example corn, scrambled eggs, sweets or wine before they were put down on the wedding bed. 203
  • 64. Other new habits Sweeping of the broken plate and carrying the bride over the threshold The tradition is that a plate is broken, the bride with the groom are supposed to sweep it up. This symbolises their cooperation and working together as a couple. Guests try to kick the bits of broken plate around and make the cleaning up more difficult. Some Slovaks believe that the bride has to be extra careful, as the number of broken pieces left over will be the number of children her husband will have with another woman! After the broken plate was cleaned up, the groom carried the bride over the threshold to her place at the table. Common soup eating Newlywed’s common soup eating from one plate at the feast symbolizes their cooperation. The second meaning, which is perhaps more significant, is a common symbol of equal sharing joys and problems in life. Before the wedding the noodles made of a hundred eggs were prepared by women. 204
  • 65. Kidnapping the bride or stealing a shoe Another tradition is “kidnapping“ the bride from the party (but it was not in the past). Male guests from the bridal party often take the bride to a close-by town or to the disco from the place of the wedding. The groom has to look for her. Then he has to pay for her release. Other times only her shoe gets stolen and the groom must pay for it – with money or alcohol. Kissing At any point during the wedding feast, the wedding guests traditionally bang their glasses or plates with the cutlery and continue until the bride and the groom stand up and kiss. This may be repeated several times during the wedding feast. 205
  • 66. SPAIN C.E.I.P. JÚPITER, San José de La Rinconada, Seville THE RITE OF CATHOLIC BAPTISM A Catholic Baptism have origins stepped in history. For the Catholic baptism is the first of seven sacraments (baptism, confirmation, eucharist, penance, anointing of the sick, holy orders and marriage). This sacrament is intended to liberate human beings from the original sin inherited from Adam and Eve to disobey God by eating the forbidden fruit. After the baptism, human beings become Christians from the Catholic Church. This person´s sacrament initiates to the Catholic Faith into membership an makes him or her a member of the church. HISTORY OF CATHOLIC BAPTISM In the year 416, the Roman Empire made compulsory Infant Baptism. For Roman Catholic tradition centuries taught that if a baby died without being baptized, they would go to a place called limbo. However, in April of 2007, Pope Benedict reversed this teaching on limbo. He also declared that the church would not revert to St. Augustine´s teaching that who died without being infants baptized go to hell. Instead the Pope created a new doctrine: baptized infants go to heaven or not. GODPARENTS The rite of Catholic Baptism is more than a big celebration and party with cakes and party favours. In the catholic tradition, Baptism makes take away the sins and one child of God´s children and a member of the Catholic Church. In preparation for the Baptism service, Catholics parents take classes an selected sponsors known as godparents. During the rite of Baptism, godparents take part in the ceremony by holding the child and making promises for the child´s spiritual growth. 206
  • 67. Godparents are expected to watch over the child´s religious well being and development throughout life. With that in mind, when your child selecting godparents for it is wise to choose a person of: Deep faith Prayer Spirituality An active catholic. TRADITIONAL DRESS Traditionally babies wear white decorative christening gowns. Many times christening outfits are passed down from one generation to the next. It is customary to wear white child and sponsors are responsible for dressing before the ceremony, place a scapular or medal of the Virgin in the child's neck as a symbol of consecrated to the Virgin. The sponsors hold a candle will be lit white during the ceremony (the candle can be decorated and even engraved with the name). During the ceremony of baptism, when the priest pours holy water on the child's head is covered with a white cloth, symbolizing the purity acquired through the sacrament. You can give the priest a shell with which pour holy water on the child's head. 207
  • 68. THE RITE OF BAPTISM The rite of Catholic Baptism can be broken into four stages with each different taking place in parts of the church. Each stage symbolizes a part of the process of the child´s initiation into the Church. WHERE WHAT HOW OR WHY In the entry way of the The questioning It takes place outside church building the church symbolizing the child is not that yet a member of the church. Entry way The exsufflation The priest breathes into the child´s face three times recalling the spirit breath of God. Entry way The sign of the cross Priest traces the Sign of the Cross with his thumb on the baby´s forehead and the chest Entry way The imposition of Priest places hand on hands the baby´s head and prays for the kindling of Faith. Entry way The imposition of salt Priest puts a few grains of salt on the baby´s mouth as a symbol of wisdom. Admission into the The exorcism The priest makes the church building Sign of the Cross over the child three times and prays for the exorcise of the unclean spirit in the name of the Trinity. Admission The Sign of the Cross This time the priest traces the Sign on the candidate´s forehead as a symbol of protection of the mind 208
  • 69. from the Devil´s violation. Admission The imposition of Again, the priest lays hands his hands on the child´s head. Admission Admission in the End of historical places church building the priest´s stole on the baby´s head, symbolizing his priestly authority, and he admits the baby into the church building. In the nave The solemn exorcism Now inside the church, the priest prays for the once again exorcise unclean spirits. In the nave The renunciation of Take a oath renouncing Satan godparents for the child Satan. In the nave The anointing Priest anoints the baby with oil on the heart and between the shoulders tracing a small cross. This represents the oil of salvation in Jesus Christ. At the font The profession of faith The priest replaces his violet stole with a white one. 209
  • 70. At the font Baptism Godparents carry the baby to the font together. The godmother holds the baby while the godfather places his right hand on the baby´s shoulder. The priest pour water three times consecrated over the baby´s forehead, baptizing in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. At the font The anointing with Anointing with a Chrism consecrated oil At the font The white linen clothe A white linen clothe symbolizes purity which of the baby´s soul is cleaned, is placed on the child´s head. At the font The lighted candle The priest gives a candle to the godparents At the font Last words of good will. 210
  • 71. SPANISH WEDDING TRADITIONS A wedding is a religious or civil ceremony, by which celebrates the beginning of marriage . Generally a wedding is a rite that formalizes the union of two people to a foreign authority that regulates and governs the procedure, which generates contractual commitments between the parties. The ceremony consists of several parts, which vary depending on the ritual, the most common are: submission to authority (priest, judge, mayor, etc.) express manifestation of the bride and groom to constitute the contractual relationship and the exchange of rings . Exchange of rings between the couple. There are many traditions that suggest what to do at each stage of a wedding, from its organization, dress, and the celebration to honeymoon . Although today are changing many of these customs, being followed in many cases only a few. In the case of marriages between same sex , in force in several countries, these practices must adapt to the situation, and let the tradition very different roles to be played by the bride and groom. "Something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue or used." In the superstitious Middle Ages said that the wedding was good luck to use: something old, to symbolize the connection of the bride with her past and represented the continuity of their marriage (used to be a jewel in the family); something borrowed, referring to the belief that happiness could bring a friend using something to be happy. It symbolized the friendship provided the loan for happiness (used to be a gem or just a tissue); something new, because it produced best hope for a future; something blue , and represented that color fidelity of the spouses . In superstitious peoples although the couple live together, the night before the wedding have to pass each one in your home or the home of their parents. Throwing rice after the church ceremony represented the seed, the offspring. The groom should not see the bride and her dress before the ceremony. The groom should wear properly tie on, as if carried crooked means that it would be unfaithful to his girlfriend . 211
  • 72. The colour of the wedding dress is a tradition White is the popular association, but originally the white bride's dress was a symbol of economic power and social status, since to obtain a white dress with the typical features of wedding dress, ie lot of material, quality, and demases ornaments, worth a lot and therefore was not readily available. 212
  • 73. The tradition that the bride used touched on her wedding day comes because in antiquity it was customary for the women wore a garland of flowers. Originally, the bride wore the veil as a symbol of youth. Catholic brides use it as a symbol of purity. Because of this, sometimes the bride is chosen by two layers to get to the altar veiled and the unveiled the groom when he is given by her father or an immediate family if the deceased (such as a grandparent). The flowers represent emotions and merits, carry a message of fertility, flowering and generosity. The superstition says that traps the lucky bride's bouquet will be lucky and be the next to marry. The carpet red is placed in the church at the entrance of the procession, represents honour and respect. The gifts are given to the bride and groom are usually designed to facilitate new entry into the marital life, reason why it is common to give away household items. 213
  • 74. Today it has become popular creating wedding gift lists in order to facilitate the guests and the couple selection of gifts, which to some extent ensures that the couple will receive gifts that really will be useful . The Wedding March is a traditional hymn played when the bride to enter the altar or place of the ceremony. For Catholic marriages, it is often a course requirement to participate in marriage. These courses are led by priests and Catholic married couples who work together as volunteers to guide the bride and groom - through a regular meeting, in some cases the weekends, by evaluating the relationship of the couple toward marriage and the commitments. 214
  • 75. SPANISH WEDDING TRADITIONS C.E.I.P. NUESTRA SEÑORA DE AURORA, Alcabón 215
  • 76. Weddings are big affairs in Spain and you're likely to find the whole extended family and the entire village turn out to celebrate. Expect at least 200 guests at traditional weddings. Some of the customs are similar, such as throwing rice, but others are less familiar. In line with most social events in Spain, most Spanish weddings start late (often the ceremony won't start until 7 p.m.) and finish very, very late (or early, depending on how you look at it). The use of the mantilla as an everyday accessory goes back to the XVII century, but the custom has been lost and the mantilla is now sometimes worn by older generations as part of a costume or in religious ceremonies. However, the mantilla is making a comeback in modern times as part of a young bride’s wedding attire: brides who want a traditional wedding are opting to wear the traditional lace mantilla instead of a wedding veil. The 216
  • 77. mantilla is exceptionally long and can trail several feet behind her wedding gown. A traditional wedding custom consisted in the groom presenting the bride with 13 coins known as unity coins which represent his commitment to support her. However, times have changed and today’s brides and grooms exchange the coins as a symbol of the wealth and finances they will evenly share. In Spain, the wedding ring is worn on the ring finger of the right hand. Spanish weddings do not include bridesmaids or groomsmen. The couple stands together at the altar with no one else in attendance. There is no Best Man or Maid of Honor. Also, the groom's mother accompanies him down the aisle. Bridesmaids are not a traditional part of Spanish weddings, but with Hollywood’s influence, they are becoming so. At the reception, the head table is traditionally set for 6: the bride, the groom and their parents. There are also no speeches. Spanish weddings can be quite noisy with plenty of loud firecrackers going off once the happy couple emerges from the church. Rice is still traditionally used, along with flower petals. During the wedding feast/reception, the bride and groom circulate from table to table carrying a basket with small wedding favors, that they personally hand out to each guest. The men will be offered a cigar or a mini-bottle of wine and the women a little present - usually something which looks and smells nice. This may be the time in which guests also “hand back” the preferred wedding gift: money… in envelopes. Some couples also send out the number of a bank account along with the invitation. 217
  • 78. The custom of cutting the groom's tie into pieces and then auctioning it off for good luck is still actively practiced today by the groom’s closest friends. Days after the wedding, the newlyweds present theirMarriage certificate- for a civil wedding or their marriage book - for a religious church wedding in order to receive their Family Book where their children’s birth will be recorded, hence the name, “Family Book”. 218
  • 79. TURKEY ORHANGAZI ILKÖĞRETIM OKULU, Istanbul WEDDING TRADITION Marriage Marriage is an association that existed since the earliest times and has great importance on human life and society. Marriage as a term is a continuous union of a man and a woman as husband and wife under all kinds of conditions of life. It is the foundation of the family which in turn is the cornerstone of society and carries universal importance. The marriage act has certain rules and patterns that change around the world, shaped by different cultures and entailing traditions and customs that define a particular society. Marriage ceremonies incorporate a number of preparations and phases leading up to the actual act. These stages include religious and even superstitious practices. At each phase, the implementation of a variety of common practices, customs and traditions have become obligatory, almost like rules and principles that govern this ritual act. Each and every society, in compliance with certain rules and practices conforming to their culture, has developed its own particular ways of executing this event. Here we will try to elaborate on different phases of marriage, complete with distinct and rich customs in every region, province and even village in Turkey, by making an attempt to generalize them along main features and aspects. 219
  • 80. Different kinds of Marriage: In the past, marriage among relatives, such as cousins, was common in Turkey. Today such kind of marriage is not practiced that much any more due to impact of urbanization. Another kind of marriage is that in the case of death of a brother, where the widowed sister-in law is wed with a single or widower brother-in law (Levirat). This is done in order to keep the inheritance of the deceased in the family and for the children’s welfare. Similarly, it is also possible that a sister gets married to a deceased sister’s husband (Sororat). However, this rural tradition too is disappearing fast. Another type of marriage is “taygeldi” marriage. In this marriage, the children from previous marriages of a widow and widower, who get married, may get married as well. In the past, particularly in rural areas, men would “snatch” or kidnap a girl that they wanted to marry, but were not allowed to for one reason or the other, mostly due to objection by families. It also happened that a girl and boy run away in mutual agreement to overcome family objection to their matrimony. In some regions, there is also a type of “snatching” called “oturakalma”, where a girl goes to the home of the man that she loves and settles there, many times at the objection of her own family. Another type of marriage which was often practiced in the past is “beÅ¿ik kertme”. While children were yet in their cradle, they were promised or “engaged” to each other by their families. In the past, the rejection of marriage by the girl or boy once they reach marrying age, would be regarded as dishonor to the family and even could cause bloody family feuds. This type of arranged marriage is almost extinct today. Another kind of marriage arrangement or custom in Turkey is marriage of “iç güveysi”. In this marriage, a man settles in the home where his wife lives. Usually in case of inability to pay a dowry for the bride or the absence of a son on the part of the bride’s family leads to this kind of arrangement. In another type of marriage called “Berder” or “deÄ¿iÅ¿-tokuÅ¿, deÄ¿iÅ¿ik” ( exchange, changing) two families may marry their daughter and son to another family’s son and daughter. Such kind of marriages releases the two families of an old custom to pay a dowry to the bride’s family, since they “even” out. A note on Baslik – dowry – is in place. This is an old custom that has nearly ceased to exist in the vast majority of Turkish society and is confined only to very underdeveloped regions. According to Turkish traditions marriage between “milk” siblings is not possible. Children who are breastfed by a woman (a custom that was not uncommon in Turkey, when a mother could not breastfeed due to illness or other reasons, especially in rural areas, but has nearly ceased today) other than their mother become her “milk” children and they are not supposed to marry their “milk” siblings. 220
  • 81. In some regions marriage with more than one wife at the same time (polygamy), while outlawed and punishable by law, is still practiced and it was more prevalent in the past when a wife could not bear children or she became ill or invalid. Age of Marriage: There is wide variation in marriage age today, with lower limits set by law. Today, men usually are expected to marry after they complete their mandatory military service, in some more traditional areas right before. General marriage ages are around 22 for men and around 20 for women, with 5-6 years variation upward. Today, more youngsters go to college, which pushes up their marriage age mostly until after graduation. Older siblings are usually expected to get married before younger siblings, particularly if they are of the same gender. Pressures to marry at a younger Although age of marriage varies according to regions today in areas where traditions are observed. In the general procedures of marriage, the groom to be and this family usually take the lead in initiating the steps leading up to marriage, while the courted girl’s family remains passive. The first step toward marriage is expected of the man and his family. Act of go-between (Görücülük), To Ask a Girl’s Hand in Marriage: In the traditional setting, the courtship process leading up to a marriage begins with seeing and looking for a girl. Families who want to marry their sons begin looking out for girls, starting with their relatives, neighbours and close friends. They get willing assistance in this “search” from their relatives, neighbours and friends. In larger cities of Turkey, where cultural changes have been more rapid, it is now most common that people meet up personally and develop a relationship directly. However, “Görücülük” has 221
  • 82. been still the main type of interaction enabling marriages is more traditional communities and rural areas. “Görücülük” is the act of go-between of several women of a family or friends of a man who wants to get married, who pay special visit to the home of the girl who they see as a potential fit to the man, to examine the girl closely and reveal their intentions. This procedure is called “seeing a girl, to send women to see a girl, woman sent out to inquire about a prospective bride” (“kız bakma”, “görücü çıkma”, “dünür gezme” in Turkish). After their affirmative judgment about the girl, time is granted to the prospective bride’s family both to get more information about the prospective groom and his family and to make a decision. As the result of affirmative agreement by both families to pursue this first acquaintance further, the task of the go- betweeners (gorucus) comes to end. Inasmuch as the fact that the work of seeing prospective bride is done by women, they do remain engaged in the process of asking for the girl's hand. In the process of asking for the girl’s hand in marriage, care is taken to include among those who will visit the prospective bride’s family such respectful persons who could not be refused by the bride’s family, together with close relatives of the prospective bridegroom’s family. It is not uncommon that several such visits are paid to a family or girl who’s reluctant to agree to this marriage for one reason or the other. 222
  • 83. Agreement to Marry: Agreement to marry (söz kesimi) follows the process of asking the prospective bride’s hand in marriage. Both families who reached an agreement by way of “Dünürcülük” (women sent out to inquire about a prospective bride) agree on marriage before crowded guests, which is called “Söz Kesme” (agreement to marry). Engagement is completed by attaching a ring and an embroidered kerchief bought by the prospective bridegroom’s family. In some regions “Söz kesimi” is also called small engagement ceremony. Sweet dessert (aÄ¿ız tatlılıÄ¿ı) brought by prospective bridegroom’s family is distributed to guests immediately after agreement by both parties to marry their children. Even today in some regions the prospective bridegroom is not present at the time of this ceremony. According to the attitude of the prospective bride’s father the bridegroom who is present in the bride’s home and the prospective bride both kiss the hands of the elder guests. Thus, the ceremony held for agreement to marry is completed. Engagement The step after the ceremony for agreement to marry is engagement. The engagement ceremony is held in the bride’s home and the costs of the ceremony in some regions are borne by the bridegroom’s family, but many times by the bride’s family. After designating the date for engagement ceremony an invitation called “invitation to neighbors” is made. Guests who gather together on the day of engagement in the bridegroom’s home go to the bride’s home. In the traditional sections of the community, women and men sit separated in the bride’s home, and after having lunch, jewelry called “takı” is given to the bride who is dressed in special engagement dress given to her by her mother-in law and relatives of the bridegroom. In some areas the bridegroom does not come to the bride’s home. In this case engagement ring is worn by the bride via a woman coming from the bridegroom’s home. In an engagement ceremony where the bridegroom is present rings worn by the bride and bridegroom are 223
  • 84. placed by an old man on ring fingers of their right hand with accompaniment of standard words and wishes. In many engagement ceremonies today, the ceremonies become more elaborate and modern, where wedding halls are rented and men and women sit together, music, mostly live, is played and the engagement is celebrated by family and friends of the prospective bride and groom. No definite rule is imposed for the length of the engagement. Rather it depends upon agreement by both sides. While it is considered natural that engaged couples may meet each other in more modern communities, in traditional, rural communities, such meetings are allowed only through the permission of the parents and usually a family members accompanies the couple. Breaking off an engagement is considered a serious matter and is frowned upon in traditional circles. If the party who broke off the engagement is the girl, all jewelry that she received must be returned to the former fiancé. If the man broke off the engagement, usually his former fiancée keeps the presents. 224
  • 85. Wedding: Let’s note at the onset that the following information on wedding ceremonies pertains to older, rural and conservative traditions in Turkey. Weddings today in the cities and more modern circles are much more like western style weddings, with a wedding banquet or reception uniting family and friends of the couple. Also, all marriages require a civil ceremony conducted and recorded by a municipal officer to become legally effective. In many cases, the religious ceremony precedes the civil ceremony by a few days. In the traditional setting, wedding ceremonies generally start on Tuesday and end on Thursday, or start on Friday and end on Sunday. Wedding expenses are met by the bridegroom’s family. Regional variances aside, traditional weddings are marked by the following passages: Planting of a wedding flag, an entertaining gathering for the women of the couple’s families on the night before the wedding day, characterized by the coloring of parts of the hands and feet with Henna (Kına Gecesi), fetching the bride, and the bride’s veil. Before the wedding, as is done in the course of the engagement ceremony, formal invitations are distributed and family, friends and neighbors are invited to the wedding. While the bride’s family tries to complete preparations for the trousseau, the bridegroom’s family tries to complete gifts for the bride to be presented to her before, during and after the wedding. A wedding flag is planted by men coming from the noon prayer and friends of bridegroom at the bridegroom’s home. In some regions, apples, onions, mirrors, etc. are placed on top of the flag. Thus the wedding is officially underway. Kına Gecesi: A traditional version and perhaps precursor of the bachelorette party, the night before the wedding is set aside for the bride to spent her last night at her family’s home in the company of women of all ages who are close to the couple’s family. This ceremony get its name “Kına Gecesi” – Henna Night – from the fact that the usually the hands of the bride is adorned with Henna. The bridegroom’s female relatives too attend this event and are hosted in the bride’s home. 225
  • 86. Usually dry henna brought by the bridegroom’s family is broken to pieces in a silver or cupper vessel by a woman whose father and mother is still alive, and not experienced otherwise separation. After preparing the bride, a veil ornamented with red flake is placed over her head, and she is brought amidst the guests accompanied by songs and hymns about henna. Hands and feet of the bride are dyed with henna. The bridegroom’s side is under the obligation to put money in the hand of the bride. Dying ceremony of henna is different according to regions. The henna so dyed has such names and types as “iplik kınası” (henna for yarn), “sıvama” (smearing), “kuÅ¿gözü” (bird eye). This ceremony, which itself can be a sad occasion, where relatives of the bride, particularly her mother lament the departure of the daughter from her parent’s home, is followed by joyous celebration, song and dance. After the guests leave, it is not unusual for the closest friends of the bride to remain with her until the next morning, spending their last “single” hours together. In some regions, a similar ceremony is held for the bridegroom by his friends at his home. Feching the Bride (Gelin Alma): The next day is the day of “Gelin Alma” (to fetch the bride), “kız alma” (to fetch girl), “gelin götürme” (to carry the bride), etc. Everybody is invited to this ceremonial procession from the home of the bride to the home of the groom. Guests go to fetch the bride on foot if not far, or by cars if too far to go. In some regions the bridegroom has not been allowed to accompany the bridal procession. The procession is followed by drums and pipes. In some regions the bride is prepared by elderly women (yenge) who help and attend to the bride. But generally today the preparations for the bride are done at a beauty salon. Then she joins the procession on her way to the groom’s home. Before leaving her home, a “Maidenhood Belt” (Bekaret kuÅ¿aÄ¿ı), mostly a red ribbon, is tied around the Bride’s waist by her brother or a close relative and then the bride says good-by to those who stay at home. To lighten things up, the doorway is sometimes blocked by a male relative of the bride or a younger brother sits on the wooden chest that carries the bride’s dowry, as to not allowing the bride to leave. A tip by the groom’s family solves this final hurdle, and the bride leaves her parent’s home. After traveling around the village, accompanied by drums and pipes, the wedding procession arrives at the home of the groom. The bride and procession is met by the Mother-in law at the front door, who welcomes the bride with a gift. Then the groom takes her by the arm and leads her inside the house. After a while the groom is taken out by his friends until later in the night. While away, he is shaved, bathed and dressed and taken to the mosque for the late night prayer (Yatsı Namazı) and then he is returned home. The religious marriage ceremony is performed for the bride and the groom who had returned to home accompanied by the hodja (preacher) of the local mosque. After the ceremony is performed, the bride and groom are allowed to enter the nuptial chamber. 226
  • 87. Nuptial Chamber (Gerdek) An elder woman in the nuptial chamber asks the couple to hold each other’s hand. The groom performs his ritual prayer, and then opens the bride’s face after giving her a present to see her unveiled face. They eat the meal offered by the bride’s family. In traditional communities virginity is extremely important and proof of it is sought by the groom’s family. This proof is usually the bed linen where the marriage was consummated. An absence of blood on the linen can be cause for great shame for both families and may be reason for the bride to be sent back to her parent’s home. Let’s note, however, that this too is a very outdated procedure and not widely practiced today. 227
  • 88. The End... (by now!!) 228