Traditions and customs

Survakane ritual

Survakane is a custom performed early in the morning of the first day of the New Year. Read more

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The Dirty Days of Christmas

 

The twelve Dirty Days last from 25 December to 5 January (Bogy Days, Rotten Days, Ash Days, Unbaptized Days).

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“Singing to rings” (Laduvane)

Laduvane (Dailada, Tailada, Ring Dipping) is a custom performed on 27 December, St. Stefan’s Day or on 1 January.

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Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve (Small Christmas, Incense or Nativity Night) is celebrated on 24 December. On that day, on the eve of Christmas, the whole family gathers around the table. Read more

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St. Ignatius Day (Ignazhden)

According to the popular belief, a new sun is born in December, days grow gradually and the new farming year begins. 20 December is the date on which one of the most important winter holidays is celebrated: Ignazhden.

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Music and dances in the Belasitsa region

The Belasitsa region is part of the Pirin folklore region. The music and dances in this region are captivating with their variety and vivid style.

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Rusalii Dances

The Rusalii dances are part of the ancient Bulgarian customs at Christmas time. They were held during the so called “Rotten” (Dirty) Days starting at Christmas and lasting until Epiphany (Voditsi).
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A custom recreated by a group of stanichari from Petrich

The Stanchinarska group from Dulboshnitsa neighborhood has existed for over a century now. The group consists of “Araps”, stanchinars, “a priest”, “a devil”, “a grandmother” and “a grandfather”, “a bear handler” and “a bear”, “a sick person carrying a healthy one” and a “pepelazh”.

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A custom associated with St. Barbara’s Day

 

Varvara lived in Illiopolis during the reign of Emperor Maximilian.

Her mother died when she was young and Varvara lived with her father who was a pagan and took great care to raise her as a pagan.

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Agricultural tradition, village of Bagrenitsi

 

The wellbeing of the people of Bagrentsi, as well as of all other villagers who own land depends largely on the quantity of resources yielded by the land they work and on the farm animals and poultry they raise.

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Tradition associated with the Chukata locality, village of Dolistovo

 

Dolistovo is a village in Western Bulgaria. It is located in Bobov Dol Municipality, Kyustendil District. It is situated in the Razmetanitsa area. The whole core of Razmetanitsa is made of tough granite rocks.

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Kukeri dances in the village of Zhabokrat, Kyustendil Municipality

 

The mummer tradition in the village of Zhabokrat is handed down from father to son. There is archived footage from the 1950s.

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Rituals performed in the village of Mlamolovo

The village of Mlamolovo hosts reenactments of old customs such as: Midwifes Day, St. Theodore’s Day, Trifon Zarezan, Easter, St. George’s Day, Christmas, wedding elements.  

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Female traditional costume in Kyustendil district

The female traditional costume in Kyustendil belongs to russet type of clothing typical for the whole of Southern Bulgaria. Cut following the model of the Kyustendil “saya” it is very close to the “zabuna” from Bansko, the saya from Devin and Demirkhisar. It was added to the local set of clothing back in 7th -19th century. In some areas it was known as "sagya", as it is called, when used in the Morihovska traditional costume in Macedonia.

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Traditional costumes from Podgorie (Belasitsa region)

The Podgorie area covers the southern parts of the Petrich and Strumitsa valleys between the towns of Petrich to the east and Strumitsa to the west. To the north it reaches the Strumeshnitsa river.

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Shtipska pastrmajlija

GPS 42.0791732,22.1753133

Shtipska pastramalija is Macedonia special kind of pie made of dough and meat, originating from the city of Shtip. The traditional pastramalija has a long oval shape with chopped meat on it. The name is derived from the word pastrma, meaning salted and dried meat of sheep or lamb.

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Crushed salt

GPS 42.0791732,22.1753133

The crushed salt is part of the festive feast of Easter religious holiday, and very often on the Holy Trinity. It is prepared in spring, although the June herbs are more delicious.

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Osogovka - Macedonian folk dance

FYR Macedonia, East region
GPS 41.921371, 22.411365

Origin: Kochani

Dancers composition: man

Holding of the dancers: by shoulders

Meter: 11/16 (2, 2, 3, 2, 2)

Character of the dance - typically male dance with expressive balance, jumps and sharp movements.

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Pomish li libe Todoro - Macedonian folk dance

FYR Macedonia, East region
GPS 41.736685, 22.190688

Origin: Shtip

Dancers composition: woman

Holding of the dancers: by hands (freely slumped down)

Meter: 22/16 - 11+11 (2 2, 3 2, 2, 3, 2, 2 2, 2)

Character of the dance - fast woman dance, with tiny steps and tiny jumps.

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Kopachka - Macedonian folk dance

FYR Macedonia, East region
GPS 42.010830, 22.714191

Origin: Masleshevo

Dancers composition: man

Holding of the dancers: by belts (left in front of the right hand)

Meter: 2/4

Character of the dance – lively dance with rapid small steps on half feet, rich with jumps, side movements and ...

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Berovka - Macedonian folk dance

FYR Macedonia, East region
GPS: 41.708211, 22.869104

Origin: Masleshevo (Berovo)

Dancers composition: woman

Holding of the dancers: by hands (freely slumped down)

Meter: 2/4

Character of the dance - the dance takes off with quick and small steps of the half feet. It abounds with jumps.

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Meeting of Rusalii, village of Sekirnik, Bosilevo

FYR Macedonia, South-East region
GPS: 41.44337,22.794029

The Rusalii are man dressed in special folk costumes, preforming games with magical content. To the costume a wooden saber is added and the Rusali is holding it in his hand. The ritual to expel the evil, preformed by the Rusalii in Gevgelija, is held in the unbaptized days from 6th to 19th January.

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Costumes from Pijanec (Delchevo valley)

In mountainous Pijanec which includes mining region Sasa in female dress styled with simple clothes in calm dark tones on the chest of the shirt which has necklace part, wear Sayaxche quite different in material, cut and decoration by the same robes in the areas of Western Macedonia.

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National costume of Salvishte - Kriva Palanka

In villages around the Kriva Palanka, known in the vernacular as part of East Slavishte, women dress is characterized by distinctive features of special (shopski) costumes - flat cut-out white linen shirt and a black klashna was ever get used, debt to below, with short sleeves, decorated chest and sleeves with lace applications of wool and sterling silver.

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Costumes from Bansko (Strumica)

 

The women's costume from the vicinity of Bansko is especially noticeable red clothes Wachau klashna, sleeveless, knee-long, rich folds at the bottom of that dress on canvas shirt, decorated with finely embroidered geometric motifs.

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Folk costumes from Kumanovo

National costumes of Kumanovo were worn in Kumanovo and surrounding villages. Women's costume is a special variant of costumes and men 's transition to male costumes eastern Slavishte , Ovce Pole and Skopje Blatina.

Women's dresses.
Women's clothing from the vicinity of Kumanovo people labeled Zhegligovski area, consisting of white canvas shirt, embroidered with rich embroidery in special technique ...

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Costumes from Bojmija – Gevgelija

Costumes worn from Bojmija villages originally were made along the river Vardar Cities around Gevgelija and Valandovo.

Men's costumes
Especially interesting is the ritual called rusaliska male costume. Rusalii men dressed in special costumes performing folk ritual games and magical item only in period from 6 to 15 January called by the people " unbaptized days ."

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