Orthodox New Year: How countries celebrate it?

Author : News Agency

Source : 112 Ukraine

On the night of January 13-14, Ukraine and other countries of the former Soviet Union unofficially celebrate the Old New Year - a historical phenomenon that has arisen as a result of the change in chronology
12:00, 13 January 2022

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For some, this is an excuse to repeat the New Year holidays, prepare a salad with mayonnaise and drink champagne (especially since January 14 this year falls on Friday - this is already the end of the week), and someone does not even know what day it is and what is its meaning. If you are one of the latter, you definitely need to read this text.

What is Old New Year?

The Old New Year got exactly this name due to the fact that earlier the holiday was celebrated on this day - according to the Julian calendar (according to the old style).

Related: Christmas in Gregorian calendar: Main attributes and traditions

In 1918, in Russia, the Council of People's Commissars decided to switch to the common European Gregorian calendar. The transition to the Gregorian calendar was introduced on February 16, 1918 - this day was considered March 1, 1918. The discrepancy between the calendars in the XX and XXI centuries is 13 days. The history of the Old New Year is connected with the attempts of the Bolsheviks to switch to the Gregorian calendar, which they tried to do since 1917.

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On the night of January 13-14, 1919, there was a reason to celebrate the old New Year. At that time, the old style was still used in the church, so it was not completely forgotten. The tradition of celebrating the Old New Year goes back over 100 years.

The tradition of celebrating the Old New Year has survived not only in the former CIS countries, but also in Serbia (where this holiday is called "Little Christmas" or "Serbian New Year"), Montenegro (locals call it "Correct New Year"), Macedonia, some German-speaking cantons of Switzerland.

Celebration traditions

They also began to celebrate the New Year twice due to the fact that it follows Christmas, on January 7. Also in the Orthodox Church on the Gregorian New Year there is the Nativity Fast, which excludes abundant feasts and amusements. For many believers, the Old New Year is of particular importance, since they can celebrate it heartily only after the end of the Christmas fast: it is already possible to set a "rich" table with meat dishes.

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In Ukraine, Belarus, this day is also celebrated Generous evening, which includes celebrations, festivities and fortune-telling.

For dinner, it is recommended to cook pies and pancakes, dumplings, a pork dish, kutya. After dinner, it is customary for everyone to ask forgiveness for possible offenses in order to meet the New Year in harmony.

Poultry or fish was not prepared for the festive table, so that happiness would not fly away or float away.

Christmas divination was also one of the traditions. The prediction that night was considered the most truthful. In a dream, you could supposedly see your future spouse if you comb your hair and put a comb under the pillow before going to bed. Going to bed, the girls uttered the words: "The betrothed-mummer, come to me to comb my head."

Also, the old New Year is preceded by the holiday of Malanka (Melanka). On January 13, the celebration began with a morning walk around the courtyards, when the children congratulated, wishing all sorts of blessings, and in the evening a similar ceremony was performed by girls, singing generosity - generous. Also one of the popular traditions in Malanka is fortune-telling with dumplings. By the filling of the dumplings, one could understand what was in store for the new year.

Related: Pope in his Christmas message urges to prevent spread of conflict in Ukraine

More holidays on this day

On January 14, they also celebrate the day of St. Basil, Archbishop of Caesarea in Cappadocia. On the eve of St. Basil's Day, it is customary to give generosity, and on Basil’s day they are sown. The first sower on New Year's, as a rule, brings happiness to the house.

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The participants of the fest can not only sing, but also dance and entertain the owners with ceremonial games. You can be generous in costumes of mummers or in masks of animals - a wolf, a bear, a goat.

From Basil’s day it was customary to be hired for work, therefore, the economic year was counted from that day.

Also on this day, the Orthodox Church celebrates the Circumcision of Jesus Christ. On the eighth day after birth, Jesus Christ was circumcised according to the Old Testament tradition, which symbolized the dedication of the child to God. During the rite of circumcision, the Savior also received the name, which during his appearance the Archangel Gabriel told the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Related: Nearly 6,000 flights delayed or canceled over Christmas weekend

Signs for the Old New Year

Most will relate to the transition from one year to another. It was believed that if a man comes first in the morning, then the year will be successful, rich and fruitful, and if a woman - hungry and dry.

It was necessary to pay off all debts and not lend - this could lead to poverty. It was impossible to enter the new period unforgiven or unforgiven.

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There are also such signs:

  • Clothes worn on the wrong side - to global changes in life for the better.
  • The first person to wash will be healthy in the coming year.
  • It was also believed that this is a great day to start your own business or a declaration of love.
  • Old New Year will help in business and bring success.
  • Also, according to legends, the number "thirteen" cannot be pronounced aloud on this day.
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