Belarusian Information Company
Print out date: 25.02.2020 11:53
10.05.2019 15:53 Photos

In pictures: Belarusians celebrate Radawnitsa

    Watch Watch
(BelaPAN Photo/Syarhey Satsyuk)

Belarusian Orthodox Christians on May 7 celebrated Radawnitsa (Radunitsa), a sort of Remembrance Day traced back to the pre-Christian era.

Radawnitsa is an official public holiday in Belarus. By tradition, Radawnitsa is observed on the ninth day after Orthodox Easter, i.e. on Tuesday after Easter week.

Belarusians and other eastern Slavs acquired a tradition of commemorating their ancestors on this day ages ago.

On Monday, Belarusians cleaned up the graves of their loved ones. The following morning they cooked ritual dishes and, after noon, they went to church to honor the memory of the dead and then to cemeteries where they laid a table-cloth or a towel on the grave mound, put out "kutya" (boiled rice with raisins) and bread with salt, lighted a candle, and began a quite conversation, or wailed if the death had occurred not long before. The grave was sprinkled with vodka and an Easter egg was rolled across it. The egg, some vodka and food were left on the grave. The food was usually pecked by birds, which Belarusians regarded as messengers between the living and the dead.

The remembrance at the cemetery ended with a party at home or in a tavern where people "dispelled melancholy." That is why there was a saying: "On Radawnitsa, people plough before lunch, cry after lunch, and dance in the evening."




  • date
  • month
  • year

Top stories

© 2000 — 2020 BelaPAN. All rights reserved..
All information published on this site is personal use only and shouldn't be copied or redistributed in any way without BelaPAN's written permission