Public holidays in Great Britain and Russia


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Public holidays in Great Britain and Russia

  1. 1. <ul><li>« Public holidays in Great Britain </li></ul><ul><li>and Russia » </li></ul><ul><li>By Lastochkina Valentina </li></ul><ul><li>Chuvash State University </li></ul>
  5. 5. NEW YEAR`S DAY New Year in Britain are often marked with parties be it at home or with friends in a club or pub. With festivities at their best till the clock strikes 12 at midnight, New Year in Britain is a time to drink, eat and dance. When talking about the New Year in Britain, one can't forget telling about the traditional custom of &quot;First Footers&quot; on the New Year's Day. It's believed that the first person over the threshold on the New Year's Day, i.e., on January 1st will dictate the luck brought to the particular house in the New Year. This tradition is mainly followed in Scotland and Northern Ireland with the first footers bringing in a piece of coal, bread and whisky while crossing the threshold.   New Year in Britain, take for instance the London's New Year's Day Parade, Scotland's New Year also known, as Hogmanay are famous all over the world.
  7. 7. Hogmany <ul><li>T he Scottish celebration of New Years Eve and can last for days. No-one celebrates the eve quite like the Scots. It is believed the Scots inherited the celebration of Hogmanay from the Vikings and their celebration of the shortest day but many believe that as Christmas was virtually banned and not celebrated in Scotland from the end of the 17th century until the 1950’s, New Years Eve was a good excuse for some revelry and the excuse to drink whisky and eat good food. Hogmanay involves parties and festivals across Scotland with the largest and most famous public party in Edinburgh. </li></ul>
  8. 9. GOOD FRIDAY <ul><li>On Good Friday, Christians remember the day when Jesus was crucified on a cross. </li></ul><ul><li>Good Friday is the Friday before Easter Sunday. </li></ul><ul><li>Many churches hold a special service. This may be a communion service in the evening or a time of prayer during the day, especially around 3 o'clock as that is about the time of day when Jesus died. </li></ul><ul><li>Many Churches hold services lasting three hours. They may celebrate the Stations of the Cross, or take part in Passion plays and dramatic readings. </li></ul><ul><li>It is traditional to eat warm 'hot cross buns' on Good Friday. Hot Cross Buns with their combination of spicy, sweet and fruity flavours have long been an Easter tradition. </li></ul><ul><li>The buns were traditionally eaten at breakfast time, hot from the oven. They were once sold by street vendors who sang a little song about them. </li></ul><ul><li>&quot;Hot cross buns, Hot cross buns, One a penny, two a penny, Hot cross buns.“ </li></ul><ul><li>It is traditional to eat fish on Good Friday instead of meat. </li></ul><ul><li>Traditionally Good Friday was the day when everything was cleaned and whitewashed in preparation for Easter Sunday. </li></ul>
  9. 10. EASTER MONDAY <ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Easter Monday is the day after Easter Sunday </li></ul><ul><li>Easter Monday is a bank holiday in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, but not Scotland. In England, Wales and Northern Ireland, many businesses and organizations are closed. Stores are often open to welcome shoppers, but public transport systems may run to a different timetable. There may be some congestion on train services and roads as people return from trips made during their four-day weekend. </li></ul>
  10. 11. Easter Monday <ul><li>Easter Monday is the last day in a four day weekend. If people have been on a short vacation or have visited family or friends, who live some distance away, they often travel back on this day. For other people, it is just a welcome day off to enjoy the spring weather or work on their garden or home improvements. </li></ul><ul><li>In some places, there are egg rolling competitions, Easter bonnet parades, displays of traditional Morris dancing fairs or special sports matches. </li></ul><ul><li>In Leicestershire, the villages of Hallaton and Medbourne hold a bottle kicking match. It has been held at least since the early eighteenth century, but its roots may be in pagan times. The event starts with the three bottles and a hare pie, which are actually wooden barrels, a parade through the two villages. Two of the barrels are filled with beer. The third is actually solid wood. The actual game consists of the two teams taking turns to get the three barrels across two streams a mile apart, by any means possible. The game is quite rough and participants can leave the game for refreshments at any time. The winning village gets to take the filled barrels to the local pub. </li></ul>
  11. 12. Egg Rolling is one of Preston's ancient community traditions. No one is sure when it began, but it's something locals love to do every easter.
  12. 13. EASTER EGGS
  13. 14. Hot Cross Buns
  14. 15. May Day Bank Holiday ( 1st Monday in May ) <ul><li>In many places, the first day or the first Monday in May is celebrated as the start of the summer season. Events are held to celebrate the end of the winter season and the fertility and hope of the approaching summer. A particularly widespread tradition is that of maypole dancing. Children, particularly girls, dance around a tall pole, from which ribbons are suspended. The aim of the dance is to create a decorative pattern on the pole with the ribbons. Many schools, particularly in rural areas, organize displays of maypole dancing. </li></ul><ul><li>Another traditional form of dancing, Morris dancing, is also associated with the beginning of May. This type of dancing is nearly always carried out exclusively by men who dress in white with bells on various parts of their costumes and carry scarves and long wooden sticks. The dancing is accompanied by loud accordion music. Groups of Morris dancers often hold displays on the early May bank holiday. </li></ul><ul><li>Other traditions include making floral garlands, decorating houses with flowers and leaves and crowning a May queen as a living image of the Roman goddess Flora. In some areas, girls go out very early to wash their faces in the morning dew. This is supposed to make them very beautiful in the coming year. In Rochester, there is a festival of chimney sweeps. Traditionally, May 1 was the only day in the year that they did not have to work. In Derbyshire, villagers decorate, or dress, the wells with flowers. </li></ul><ul><li>May 1 or the first Monday in May is also a day for large marches, particularly London, to celebrate and demand rights for workers. Many aspects of these marches are organized by the trade unions. Some people travel very large distances to join in the marches. In some years, the marches have ended violently, but in recent times they have remained peaceful. </li></ul>
  15. 16. Maypole Dancing
  16. 17. <ul><li>Many types of May Day celebrations date back to fertility rituals performed in pagan times. This is particularly true of events to celebrate Flora, a Roman goddess. Through the ages, there have been some attempts to outlaw this type of celebration, because it was seen as unchristian. However, the celebrations have been remarkably robust. </li></ul><ul><li>In Scotland, the Early May Bank holiday has been observed on the first Monday in May since 1871, but was only introduced in the rest of the United Kingdom in 1978. In 1995 and only in that year, this bank holiday was moved to the second Monday in May (May 8) to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the allies accepting the surrender of the armed forces of Nazi Germany. This was the formal end of World War II and is known as VE Day. </li></ul>
  17. 18. SPRING BANK HOLIDAY ( Last Monday in May ) <ul><li>The Spring Bank Holiday is a day off for most people in the United Kingdom and so most banks and shops close on this day. This is one of the best bank holidays for relaxing, especially if it falls on Monday as many people can enjoy a long weekend. The weather in the UK is usually at its best in May and with the summer just around the corner many people are motivated to get outdoors and perhaps go for a family outing. Most people who have caravans or mobile homes decide to spend a few days away, perhaps going to the coast and so it is a perfect opportunity to take a long weekend break. </li></ul>
  18. 20. <ul><li>The spring bank holiday started as the Monday after Pentecost. This is known as Whitsun or Whit Monday in the United Kingdom. The Banking and Financial Dealings Act 1971, moved this bank holiday to the last Monday in May, following a trail period of this arrangement from 1965 to 1970. </li></ul><ul><li>In 2002 this bank holiday was moved to June 4 to follow an extra bank holiday on June 3. This gave people a four-day weekend to celebrate the Golden Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II. This marked the 50th year of her accession to the throne of the United Kingdom. The spring bank holiday will also be moved to June 4 in 2012 to form a long weekend together with the Queen`s Diamond Jubilee bank holiday. </li></ul>
  19. 21. <ul><li>. In some years, there have been a lot of injuries, causing the event to be cancelled a couple of times in recent years. In these years, the cheese was rolled For many people the spring bank holiday is a pleasant day off work or school. Some people choose to take a short trip or vacation. Others use the time to walk in the country, catch up with family and friends, visit garden centers or do home maintenance. However, in some parts of the United Kingdom, there are some customs associated with this day. </li></ul><ul><li>On Cooper's Hill in Brockworth, Gloucestershire, people race down a steep hill following a large round cheese. The hill is concave and has an incline of 1:1 in some places. The first person to cross the finishing line wins a Double Gloucester cheese weighing about 8lbs (around 3.5kg). The custom may have been started by the Romans or ancient Britons and be an ancient fertility rite or a way of guaranteeing the rights of the villagers to graze their livestock on the surrounding land down the hill, but nobody was allowed to chase it. </li></ul><ul><li>In Endon in Staffordshire, the villagers dress their well, hold a fayre (village celebration) and crown a girl as the Well Dressing Queen. Local men hold a competition, known as 'Tossing the Sheaf', in which they compete to see who can toss a bale of straw the highest. In other places, boats are blessed, Morris dancers put on displays and local festivals are held. </li></ul>
  20. 22. SUMMER BANK HOLIDAY ( Last Monday in August ) <ul><li>For many people, the summer bank holiday marks the end of the summer. Some people take trips or short vacations during the three day weekend. For others, it is another opportunity to work in their gardens or carry out home improvements. </li></ul><ul><li>In London the Notting Hill Carnival is held. This street festival is best known for its exuberant costumes, dancing and music played by steel drum bands. The festival has been held every year since 1965 and was originally organized by immigrants from the Caribbean, particularly Trinidad, to the United Kingdom. It started as a protest against the racism, poor working and housing conditions that they suffered. </li></ul><ul><li>Today, the Notting Hill Carnival is a multicultural celebration, attracting over two million people. It is thought to be the second largest street carnival in the world. In the past, a considerable amount of public disorder occurred round the event, but it has been calmer in recent years. </li></ul>
  21. 23. Notting Hill Carnival
  22. 24. <ul><li>The summer bank holiday was introduced in the Bank Holidays Act 1871 and first observed in that year. It was originally intended to give bank employees the opportunity to participate and attend cricket matches. Exactly one hundred years later, the Banking and Financial Dealings Act 1971 moved this bank holiday to the last Monday in August for England, Wales and Northern Ireland. This followed a trial period from 1965 to 1970 of the new date. In Scotland, it remained on the first Monday in August. </li></ul>
  23. 25. CHRISTMAS DAY <ul><li>In Great Britain, Christmas celebrations continue until the Twelfth Night. Preparing foods, sending Christmas cards, house and church decorations and wrapping up gifts keep everyone busy. On Christmas Eve, younger kids hang up their stockings on the ends of the beds or by the chimney for the Father Christmas. On Christmas morning, presents are opened up and a grand feast is served just after midday. Table setting includes the use of best china and glassware and a cracker for everyone. Meal starts with a toast and popping of the crackers. The traditional Christmas speech of the British Monarch is broadcasted on the television. </li></ul><ul><li>In the afternoon, people visit family and friends. Some churches in Great Britain have a Christingle service (a carol service that originated in Scandinavia) on the fourth Sunday of Advent. After the service, every child received an orange and candle wrapped in a red ribbon to represent Jesus, his blood and his love for the world. British children write letters to Father Christmas and throw them into the fireplace so they float up the chimney to the North Pole. If letters get burn, they need to be rewritten. The traditional plum pudding is served with little treasures hidden inside it and people who find it are considered lucky for the whole year. The tradition of hanging mistletoe began in Britain. </li></ul>
  24. 28. <ul><li>Christmas stocking </li></ul><ul><li>According to legend, a poor man worried that this three daughters would not get married as he did not have dowry for them. St Nicholas, the Bishop of Myra, knew of their plight and wanted to help them. On Christmas Eve, after the girls had put their stockings out to dry on the fire place, he threw some gold coins down the chimney. The coins landed in the stockings and filled them. When news of this spread, other people began to hang stockings too in the hope that they would receive gifts. </li></ul>
  25. 29. <ul><li>Christmas Trees </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>We might curse the fact that we're still picking pine needles out of our toes come spring, but the idea of decorating your house with greenery at winter goes back thousands of years. King Tut may never have seen the multicoloured mess we put up with nowadays, but he would have had date palm leaves scattered around his royal abodes on the winter solstice . </li></ul><ul><li>Evergreens were celebrated in Egypt as a reminder that, though the winter was harsh and yielded little, spring would come just as inevitably. The palm also spawned a shoot each month, meaning that by December (as it would become known) Egyptians weilded the leaves to show that the year was over. They'd have decorated with entire forests if they ever saw a European winter. </li></ul><ul><li>Soon Egypt's tree-hugging tradition spread north to Italy, during the height of the Roman Empire . Palms were substituted for firs and other native species, on which tapers would be lit and burned in honour of Saturn, god of agriculture and justice, during the notoriously raucous Saturnalia festival. The custom migrated north to Germany and Scandinavia during the Middle Ages, resulting in today's obsession. </li></ul>
  26. 30. <ul><li>Christmas cards may only have come into European vogue during the 15th century (thanks to the Germans, again). But their origins go back thousands of years before, to the greetings given in Ancient Egypt via ornately decorated papyrus. Related or not, the ancient Chinese are thought to be some of the greetings card's earliest fans, exchanging simple messages to celebrate the New Year. </li></ul><ul><li>The invention of printing, and the west's popularising of card-giving, wouldn't arrive for another 1,500 years or so. You might expect the Chinese, with their longstanding obsession with fireworks (and blowing things up in general) to have invented the Christmas cracker too. Not so: desperate London sweet-seller Tom Smith invented it as an explosive panacea to his ailing bonbon trade, in 1847. </li></ul>
  27. 31. BOXING DAY <ul><li>Boxing Day, celebrated in Great Britain and in most areas settled by the English, including Canada, Australia, and New Zealand is December 26, the day after Christmas. There are many interpretations for the day. One theory dates back to an earlier time in which the primary practice of giving gifts to employees and those providing services throughout the year was done the day after Christmas. Another theory (my favorite) recognizes that Christmas celebrations brought family members from far and wide to gather together in this once a year opportunity for fellowship. At the end of the celebrations, each family would fill a box with their annual necessities (provided by the head of the household) and head back to their homestead. This sounds very similar to the contemporary practice of college kids, home for the holidays gathering up food, clothes and money before heading back to school – I guess times don’t really change much. </li></ul>
  29. 34. NEW YEAR <ul><li>Russian New Year traditions include a New Year's Tree known as Novogodnaya Yolka. It is decorated with sweets and has a bright star on top. Another tradition is the arrival of Father Frost or Ded Moroz along with his granddaughter Snegurochka, the snow girl. Children wait for them as they bring New Year presents and keep them under the New Year's Tree. To make Father Frost happy, children sing songs. </li></ul><ul><li>Of course, no New Year is complete without a family get together and delicious meals and fireworks. People have a sumptuous dinner with a glass of bubbling champagne. Another tradition is the listening to the New Year Speech by the President of Russia on New Year's Day. One famous New Year tradition in Russia is fortune telling. Most unmarried girls and women follow this tradition. </li></ul><ul><li>The celebrations for New Year end on January 13th when Russia celebrates the Old - Style New Year. This day marks the start of the Julian calendar. </li></ul>
  30. 35. “ DED MOROZ” and “SNEGUROCHKA”
  31. 36. CHRISTMAS <ul><li>Today, Christmas is celebrated in the country in a grand fashion, with the faithful participating in an all-night Mass in Cathedrals. The main religion in Russia is called Russian Orthodox. The Russian Orthodox Church is more than one thousand years old and most of the Christian population in the country belong to it. In Russia, many people don’t ea t meat, eggs or milk from a few weeks before Christmas and it is customary to fast until after the first church service on Christmas Eve. Christmas Eve dinner is meatless but festive. The menu usually depends on the wealth of the families. A typical Christmas dinner however, includes delicacies such as hot roast Pirog (Russian pies made out of meat or cabbage), and Pelmeni (m eat dumplings). The most important ingredient is a special porridge called kutya. The traditional ingredients that go in its preparation are wheatberries (or other grains which symbolize hope and immortality), and honey and poppy see ds which ensure happiness, success and peace. The kutya is eaten from a common dish to symbolize unity. </li></ul><ul><li>A Christmas ceremony of great significance here is the blessing of individual homes. During Christmastime, a priest visits every home accompanied by boys carrying vessels of holy water. A little water is sprinkled in each room, which is believed to usher in happiness and fortune to them. Another popular custom here is that of young children going from house to house on the first day of Christmas carrying a star and singing carols and getting sweets from adults. </li></ul><ul><li>Russia celebrates a white Christmas what with the weather being very cold and snowy during this time and the temperature always dropping to minus degrees. </li></ul>
  32. 37. <ul><li>Defender of the Motherland Day , </li></ul><ul><li>Also known as The Army Day, or Men's Day, is a tribute to all the generations of Russian soldiers from the ancient times till modern days, to all those who courageously defended our Motherland from invaders. On this day the entire masculine population - from boys to old men - receive special greetings and presents. Women have a wonderful opportunity to convey their warmest and kindest feelings to the loved ones and to indulge them with sings of attention and affection. </li></ul>
  33. 38. <ul><li>International Women's Day was born at a time of great social turbulence and crisis, and thus initially was associated with a tradition of protest and political activism. On March 8, 1857 textile female-workers of New York held a rally against low wages and bad labor conditions. In 1910 to commemorate these events the International Women's Congress in Copenhagen proclaimed this date as the International Women's Day to be marked annually. In Russia it has been celebrated since 1913 and now is also treated as the first spring holiday, which cherishes the love for and beauty of the Russian women and women all over the world. </li></ul>
  34. 39. <ul><li>Many Russian men give flowers and postcards to their female relatives, friends and colleagues on March 8 to honor women’s role in the Russian society. Women often refuse to do any housework on this day, and men in their family take care of cooking, cleaning, and other chores traditionally performed by women in the past. </li></ul><ul><li>Men sometimes invite women to a restaurant or a movie theater and try to fulfill women’s requests throughout the day. Many television programs pay tribute to achievements of famous Russian women from the past (for example, the first woman in space, Valentina Tereshkova) and the present (for example, successful business women and writers). </li></ul>
  35. 40. Spring and Labor Day <ul><li>The most common symbols : </li></ul><ul><li>Flowers, especially tulips and lilacs – symbols of late spring. </li></ul><ul><li>Blooming branches of fruit trees – a symbol of approaching summer. </li></ul><ul><li>Balloons – a symbol of celebration. </li></ul>
  36. 41. <ul><li>May 1 was a symbol of class struggle in Russia for about 100 years (1890-1990). Workers held annual protests on this day from 1890 to 1917, demanding better work conditions and higher wages. In 1918, May 1 became an important public holiday, known as the Day of the International Solidarity of Workers, in the Soviet Union. Most Soviet cities had parades and obligatory workers’ marches on this day until 1990. The Russian Parliament renamed the holiday as Spring and Labor Day in 1992. </li></ul>
  37. 42. <ul><li>Many Russians use this public holiday to relax. Some may go on a retreat to their country homes (called dachas ) to work in the garden or spend time with their families. It is also common for people to have picnics or barbecues. Men may give spring flowers, especially tulips and lilacs, to women, and parents may buy balloons and ice-cream to their children to celebrate the end of the cold season in Russia. </li></ul><ul><li>Spring and Labor Day lost its socialist meaning after the Soviet Union’s collapse, but some political parties and labor unions may still organize demonstrations on this day. Party members and labor union activists may participate in such demonstrations. </li></ul>
  38. 43. VICTORY DAY
  39. 44. <ul><li>May 9th, Russia celebrates the victory over Nazi Germany, while remembering those who died in order to achieve it. On 9 May 1945 (by Moscow time) the German military surrendered to the Soviet Union and the Allies of World War II in Berlin (Karlshorst). A military parade is held in Moscow to celebrate the day. Vicroty Day (День Победы Den Pobedy) is by far one of the biggest Russian holidays. It commemorates those who died in WWII and pays tribute to survivors and veterans. Flowers and wreaths are laid on wartime graves and special parties and concerts are organized for veterans. In the evening there is a firework display. A huge military parade, hosted by the President of the Russian Federation, is annually organized in Moscow on Red Square. Similar parades are organized in all major Russian cities. </li></ul>
  40. 45. RUSSIA DAY <ul><li>On June 12, 1990 Soviet leaders signed a declaration of Russia’s state sovereignty. That document symbolized the beginning of democratic reforms in Russia. It also marked one of the first steps to the official dissolution of the Soviet Union. June 12 became a public holiday in 1994, but many people either did not understand its meaning or refused to celebrate it. </li></ul><ul><li>To promote June 12 as a patriotic holiday, Russia's first president Boris Yeltsin suggested renaming it to Russia Day in 1997 (the holiday's original name was the Day of Signing the Declaration of State Sovereignty). The renaming took place in 2002 when the Russian Parliament adopted a new version of Russia's Labor Code. </li></ul><ul><li>Symbols </li></ul><ul><li>The Russian flag and a two-headed eagle, the state symbols of the Russian Federation, are the most common symbols of Russia Day. </li></ul>
  41. 46. <ul><li>Russia Day is an occasion for many Russians to demonstrate national pride. Some people celebrate Russia's economic and social achievements and pay tribute to famous Russians on June 12. People may attend concerts and fireworks that take place in many cities throughout the country. Prominent Russian writers, scientists and humanitarian workers receive a National Award from the Russian president on this day. Yet many other people see Russia Day as nothing more than a day off. </li></ul><ul><li>Many Russians refused to celebrate this holiday when it was introduced in 1994. For them it was the day when their leaders agreed to the dissolution of the Soviet Union. The demise of the Soviet Union led to unemployment and poverty of many Russians. People who oppose celebrating June 12 spend time in their countryside houses (dachas) or do other outdoor activities. </li></ul>
  43. 48. <ul><li>Unity Day ( Den narodnogo edinstva ) was first celebrated on November 4, 2005, commemorates the popular uprising led by Kuzma Minin and Dmitry Pozharsky which ejected the Polish invaders from Moscow in November of 1612, and more generally the end of the Time of Troubles and foreign intervention in Russia. The event was marked by a public holiday which was held in Russia on October 22 (Old Style) from 1649 till 1917. Its name alludes to the idea that all the classes of Russian society willingly united to preserve Russian statehood when its demise seemed inevitable, even though there was neither Tsar nor Patriarch to guide them. Most observers view this as an attempted replacement to counter Communist demonstrations on November 7 holiday, which marked the anniversary of the October Revolution. Recently a film 1612 was made to explain to the Russian audiences the history behind the new holiday. National Unity Day is also known as Consolidation Day (as an alternative translation), which people in Russia celebrate on November 3 - November 4. </li></ul>
  44. 49. The Constitution Day <ul><li>The Constitution Day - December 12: On this date in 1993 the new Constitution of the Russian Federation was approved, a fundamental law of the state, one of the most important democractic institutions. </li></ul>
  45. 50. Literature <ul><li>Голицынский Ю . “Great Britain” изд . «Каро» г. С.-Петербург, 1999г.; </li></ul><ul><li>Колуфман К.И. «Страницы Британской истории» изд. «Титул» г. Обнинск, 1999г.; </li></ul><ul><li>Костенко Г . Т . “Reader for summer” изд . «Просвещение» г. Москва 1985г.; </li></ul><ul><li>Ощепкова В . В . “Britain in Brief” изд . « Лист » г . Москва 1999 г .; </li></ul><ul><li>Рис-Пармен “ Christmas ”, журнал «Англия» №69 стр. 113-119; </li></ul><ul><li>Рис-Парнал «Рождество», журнал «Англия» №77 стр.107-109; </li></ul><ul><li>Стивен Раблей “Customs and traditions in Britain” изд . “Longman Group”, ИК , 1996 г .; </li></ul><ul><li>Усова Г . С . “British history” изд . «Лань» г. С.-Петербург 1999г.; </li></ul><ul><li>Хишунина Т . Н . “Customs, traditions and holidays in Britain” изд . «Просвещение» г.С.-Петербург 1975г.; </li></ul><ul><li>T. Khimunina, N. Konon, L. Waishe “Customs, traditions and Festivals of Great Britain” </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>