Sunday, 1 May 2011

Day 73: Valborg

Hello again audience, I have to say sorry once again for missing another blog day. I do have an excuse as yesterday was a Swedish celebration called Valborg, its sort of a Swedish version of bonfire night! Today is one of the last days i get to spend with my partner and soon will be heading home for exams.. I dont have much to talk about so I will leave you with some facts about Valborg!

Now some random facts!

In Sweden, Walpurgis Night (Swedish: Valborgsm√§ssoafton or simply Valborg) has more or less become a de facto half holiday. The forms of celebration in Sweden vary in different parts of the country and between different cities. Sir James George Frazer in The Golden Bough writes, "The first of May is a great popular festival in the more midland and southern parts of Sweden. On the eve of the festival, huge bonfires, which should be lighted by striking two flints together, blaze on all the hills and knolls." One of the main traditions in Sweden is to light large bonfires, a custom that is most firmly established in Svealand and may have begun in Uppland during the 18th century: "At Walpurgis (Valborg), farm animals were let out to graze, and ever since the early 18th century bonfires (majbrasorkasar) have been lit to scare away predators." In Southern Sweden, an older tradition, no longer practised, was for the younger people to collect greenery and branches from the woods at twilight, these were used to adorn the houses of the village. The expected reward for this task was to be paid in eggs.
Singing traditional songs of spring is widespread throughout the country. The songs are mostly from the 19th century and were spread by students' spring festivities. The strongest and most traditional spring festivities are also found in the old university cities, such as Uppsala and Lund, where undergraduates, graduates and alumni gather at events that last most of the day from early morning to late night on 30 April, or sista april ("The Last Day Of April") as it is called in Lund. More modern Valborg celebrations, particularly among Uppsala students, oftentimes consist of enjoying a breakfast including champagne and strawberries. During the day, people gather in parks, drink considerable amounts of alcoholic beverages, barbecue and generally enjoy the weather, if it happens to be favourable.

1 comment:

  1. Crystal Metzler2 May 2011 at 07:25

    i bet that is a site to behold! all those bonfires lighting up the night! that is a very cool festival! and the history behind it is very cool to learn! i would have probably NEVER known about this without you telling me! :) i love to learn how places all over celebrate all the holidays and things! thanks. i hope your valborg was a good one! :) i i could have a bonfire at my apartment to celebrate i totally would! lol and the breakfast with champagne and strawberries sounds super yummy! :) that i can do! atleast you got to spend it with your lovely Fanny! :) oh, and nice fire picture too! can't wait to go camping and have a fire! woohooo