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Midsummer - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Midsummer. Also called. Summer Solstice, Adonia, St.
John's Feast Day, JÄÅ†i, LiÃ°a / Litha, Midsommar, Ivan Kupala Day, Juhannus, Mittumaari, Alban Hefin, GÅµyl Ganol yr Haf, Sankthans, JaanipÃ¤ev, KeskikesÃ¤, Rasos. Observed by. Residents of the province of Quebec in Canada, Nordic peoples, Baltic peoples, Estonians, Russians, Poles, Germans, Finns, Belarusians, Neopagans. Type. Cultural, Baltic Finns, Christian, Celtic, Slavic, Norse/Germanic, Balts, Wiccan. Significance. Marks the ancient middle of Summer, astronomical beginning of Summer, and the nativity of St. John the Baptist. Celebrations. Festivals, bonfires, feasting, singing, Maypole dancing.
Date. June 2. 1, 2. Summer Solstice on June 1. Related to. Summer Solstice, Quarter days, Nativity of St. John the Baptist. Midsummer, also known as St John's Day, is the period of time centred upon the summer solstice, and more specifically the Northern European celebrations that accompany the actual solstice or take place on a day between June 1. June 2. 5 and the preceding evening. The exact dates vary between different cultures.
The Christian Church designated June 2. Christian martyr St John the Baptist, and the observance of St John's Day begins the evening before, known as St John's Eve. These are commemorated by many Christian denominations. In Sweden the Midsummer is such an important festivity that there have been serious discussions to make the Midsummer's Eve into the National Day of Sweden, instead of June 6. It may also be referred to as St. Hans Day.BackgroundEuropean midsummer- related holidays, traditions, and celebrations are pre- Christian in origin. They are particularly important in geographic Northern Europe â€“ Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Finland, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania â€“ but is also very strongly observed in Poland, Russia, Belarus, Germany, Netherlands, Ireland, parts of the United Kingdom (Cornwall especially), France, Italy, Malta, Portugal, Spain, Ukraine, other parts of Europe, and elsewhere â€“ such as Canada, the United States, Puerto Rico, and also in the Southern Hemisphere (mostly in Brazil, Argentina and Australia), where this imported European celebration would be more appropriately called "Midwinter". Midsummer is also sometimes referred to by some Neopagans as Litha, stemming from Bede's De temporum ratione which provides Anglo- Saxon names for the months roughly corresponding to June and July as se Ã†rra LiÃ¾a and se Ã†fterra LiÃ¾a (the "early Litha month" and the "later Litha month") with an intercalary month of LiÃ¾a appearing after se Ã†fterra LiÃ¾a on leap years.
The fire festival or Lith- Summer solstice is a tradition for many pagans. Solstice celebrations still centered on the day of the astronomical summer solstice. Some choose to hold the rite on June 2. June 2. 4, the day of the solstice in Roman times.
Although Midsummer is originally a pagan holiday, in Christianity it is associated with the nativity of John the Baptist, which is observed on the same day, June 2. Catholic, Orthodox and some Protestant churches. It is six months before Christmas because Luke 1: 2. Luke 1. 3. 6 imply that John the Baptist was born six months earlier than Jesus, although the Bible does not say at which time of the year this happened.In Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Quebec (Canada), the traditional Midsummer day, June 2. So it was formerly also in Sweden and Finland, but in these countries it was, in the 1. Friday and Saturday between June 1.
June 2. 6, respectively.In Wicca, practitioners celebrate on the longest day and shortest night of the year which has not had a set date since the retirement of the 1. Celtic calendar. HistoryThe celebration of Midsummer's Eve (St.
John's Eve among Christians) was from ancient times a festival of the summer solstice. Bonfires were lit to protect against evil spirits which were believed to roam freely when the sun was turning southward again. In later years, witches were also thought to be on their way to meetings with other powerful beings. The solstice itself has remained a special moment of the annual cycle of the year since Neolithic times. The concentration of the observance is not on the day as we reckon it, commencing at midnight or at dawn, as it is customary for cultures following lunar calendars to place the beginning of the day on the previous eve at dusk at the moment when the Sun has set.[clarification needed] In Sweden, Finland, Latvia and Estonia, Midsummer's Eve is the greatest festival of the year, comparable only with Walpurgis Night, Christmas Eve, and New Year's Eve. Ancient Romans would hold a festival to honor the god Summanus on June 2.
In the 7th century, Saint Eligius (died 6. Flanders against the age- old pagan solstice celebrations. According to the Vita by his companion Ouen, he'd say: "No Christian on the feast of Saint John or the solemnity of any other saint performs solestitia [summer solstice rites] or dancing or leaping or diabolical chants."As Christianity entered pagan areas, midsummer celebrations came to be often borrowed and transferred into new Christian holidays, often resulting in celebrations that mixed Christian traditions with traditions derived from pagan Midsummer festivities. The 1. 3th- century monk of Winchcomb, Gloucestershire, who compiled a book of sermons for the feast days, recorded how St. John's Eve was celebrated in his time: Let us speak of the revels which are accustomed to be made on St. John's Eve, of which there are three kinds.
On St. John's Eve in certain regions the boys collect bones and certain other rubbish, and burn them, and therefrom a smoke is produced on the air. They also make brands and go about the fields with the brands. Thirdly, the wheel which they roll.The fires, explained the monk of Winchcombe, were to drive away dragons, which were abroad on St. John's Eve, poisoning springs and wells.
The wheel that was rolled downhill he gave its explicitly solstitial explanation: "The wheel is rolled to signify that the sun then rises to the highest point of its circle and at once turns back; thence it comes that the wheel is rolled."On St John's Day 1. Petrarch watched women at Cologne rinsing their hands and arms in the Rhine "so that the threatening calamities of the coming year might be washed away by bathing in the river."Contemporary national traditionsAustriaIn Austria the midsummer solstice is celebrated each year with a spectacular procession of ships down the Danube River as it flows through the wine- growing Wachau Valley just north of Vienna.
Up to 3. 0 ships sail down the river in line as fireworks erupt from the banks and hill tops while bonfires blaze and the vineyards are lit up. Lighted castle ruins also erupt with fireworks during the 9. Portuguese St. John's Day, brought to Brazil during colonial times, has become a popular event that is celebrated during a period that starts one week before St. Anthony's Day (June 1.
St. Peter's Day (June 2. This nationwide festival, called "Festa Junina" (June Festival), or SÃ£o JoÃ£o, takes place during midwinter in most of the country.
Rural life is celebrated through typical clothing, food, and dance (particularly square dancing, or quadrilha). The quadrilha features couple formations around a mock wedding whose bride and groom are the central attraction of the dancing. A kind of maypole (called "pau- de- sebo") is also raised and used in some festivities. It's prepared a typical hot drink called "quentÃ£o" (very hot) that consists in a mix of fruits and spices with a lacing of CachaÃ§a. On St. John's Day eve celebration, it's sometimes placed a ritual of walking on live- coal made of the remnants of the main bonfire, which is a traditional part of the party, on barefoot by midnight. It's believed that if the one who walks is strong in faith, he shall not be hurt.
Two northeastern towns in particular have competed with each other for the title of "Biggest Saint John Festival in the World", namely Caruaru (in the state of Pernambuco), and Campina Grande, in ParaÃba. The festivities also coincide with the corn harvest, dishes served during this period are commonly made with corn, such as canjica and pamonha; dishes also include boiled or baked vegetable corn (often buttered), sausages, sweet potatoes, peanuts, and numerous sweet dishes such as rice pudding.
The celebrations are very colorful and festive and include the use of fireworks and bonfires. Bulgaria. A firewalking ritual on Enyovden (Midsummer day) in Bulgaria. On Midsummer day Bulgarians celebrate the so- called Enyovden. On the same day the Eastern Orthodox church celebrates the day of John the Baptist and the rites and traditions of both holidays are often mixed.
A fire- related ritual is also performed in Bulgaria on that day, it involves barefoot dance on smoldering embers and is called Nestinarstvo. Bulgarian folklore states the beginning of summer starts on Enyovden. It is thought that in the morning of Enyovden, when the sun rises, it "winksâ€™ and "plays". Anyone seeing the sunrise will be healthy throughout the year.
It is believed that on Enyovden a variety of herbs have the greatest healing power, and that this is especially true at sunrise. Therefore, they have to be picked early in the morning before dawn. Womenâ€“sorceresses and enchantresses go to gather herbs by themselves to cure and make charms.
The herbs gathered for the winter must be 7. In Newfoundland and Labrador, St.
John's Day is observed on the Monday nearest June 2. John Cabot's discovery of Newfoundland in 1.
In Quebec, the celebration of June 2. New France by the first French colonists. Great fires were lit at night.
According to the Jesuit Relations, the first celebrations of St John's Day in New France took place around 1. In 1. 83. 4, Ludger Duvernay, printer and editor of La Minerve took the leadership of an effort to make June 2. Canadiens (French Canadians).