On November 18, Russia officially celebrated the birthday of Santa Claus. This date is timed to coincide with the onset of winter at home New Year character - in Veliky Ustyug, and was chosen by the Russian children in 2005.
But the image of a powerful wizard with a beard and a staff over at least two thousand years. Primitive Santa Claus was not a good-natured, he represented a bitter cold night and the connection with the world beyond the grave.
So, what is really a fairy tale "Jack Frost" why Maiden is only in Russia, which means that dance around the Christmas tree dressed up and look like a wizard of the Russian foreign colleagues - on the list Website
1. An evil Santa Claus and sacrifice h2> direct mention of Santa Claus in Slavic mythology there. But there are different versions of its appearance. One of them - the existence of the spirit of the winter, bore names such as Morok , Treskun or Frost In the legends of the Celts described a similar winter god, evil and cruel. His name was Grand Old Man of the North , and it was the cause of death and disaster. On New Year's night, he went door to door with a huge canvas bags, but unlike his modern counterpart, not handing out gifts, and collected blood sacrifices that are not received for the current year.
2. Wraith and carols h2> About the death and said one of the names of that spirit - wraith Even before the advent of Christianity in Russia, people believed that spirits of the dead guard their family and take care of a good harvest. To thank and appease the spirits of their gifts to gifts. Until we have reached this ancient ritual of Christmas carols. On the eve of the festival village youngsters wore masks, wrenched coats and went home, where she received treatment from the owners. Among the fun of Christmas Carols always had someone dressed all terrible. He represented the oldest and most formidable spirit, he was forbidden to speak, and his name was simply Santa strong>.
3. Fairy tale "Jack Frost" - a journey into the world of the dead h2> Echoes of the old legends about the rigors of the cold lord survived thanks to Russian folk tales and proverbs, which aired from generation to generation. The most striking example is the much-loved fairy tale "Jack Frost", written in the XIX century. According to the text of the tale, on the one hand, Frost endows stepdaughter gold for good behavior, but on the other - the daughter stepmother freezes to death, in fact, for the usual laziness.
«< The tale is encrypted ancient ritual of the journey into the world of the dead. The Hereafter perceived as a source of prosperity for the living, so the stepmother sends to his daughter. But in order to pass the test in the next world, you need to have the virtuous qualities of the hero. And so stepdaughter returned with gifts and stepmother's daughter dies in a world of the dead. Of course, the tale has a social basis, it teaches how to meet the senior, not to be rude, do not be lazy and so on. But textually tale is also associated with the girl's initiation. For example, in some regions of Russia there was a custom where young girls obkidyvali snow. So "Jack Frost" - it is also a story about the fate of the maiden, "- said an assistant professor of folklore and ancient literature UrFU Natalia Gramatchikova.
4. Maiden - is an animated snowman h2> With the way Maiden is also not so simple. According to one version, which specifically mentions folklorist Alexander Afanasyev, an image linked to the origin of the Snow Maiden cloud spirits spring from melting ice and snow Maiden here acts as a seasonal character, located at the junction of the winter and spring, and is responsible for the changing seasons. Another version associates the image with the image of Kostroma Snow Maiden and Slavic rite of burial of Kostroma. Straw effigy depicting Woman Kostroma, drowned in the river, or burned at the stake. Burning Kostroma - is both a farewell to winter.
That is, the Snow Maiden - is an animated snowman, It was a symbol of winter (in the figurative sense - death), and was associated with the world beyond the grave. Maiden image exists in this form only in Russian. In all other countries, "Santa Claus" as whatever they are called, are alone. Apparently, the family ties with Santa Claus Snow Maiden she was ascribed later, when formed an artistic image of winter tales characters.
5. Outlaw h2> Meanwhile, Santa Claus and Christmas tree for a long time had nothing to do with the New Year Our usual image of Santa Claus began to take shape until the beginning of the twentieth century. However, after the 1917 revolution, Santa Claus became "enemies of the people", and Christmas and New Year's fir were persecuted by the Soviet authorities.
Resolute their expulsion occurred on the eve of 1929. Christmas was declared the official working hours, and special patrols went from house to house and looked in the window - do not you dare anyone to celebrate bourgeois party. But in the 1930s, Santa Claus has received political rehabilitation. The first official Christmas tree in the USSR was held December 31, 1935, and in January 1937 children in the New Year's holiday have welcomed Santa Claus. Great contribution to the modern way of a good magician with a beard made Soviet cinema and multipliers.
6. Christmas dance - is disguised worship h2> The researchers have another interesting version of the origin of modern Christmas traditions, without which no cost, no child's tree. "Round dance around the Christmas tree - a soviet transformation of the religious rite of worship. After all, how it looks - the children dance in a circle and shout "Herringbone, burn!" And Ded Moroz stares, who does not cry. That is meant collective participation in this ritual. Brilliant clothing, tinsel - it is also a reference to the brocade garments of priests, "- said Natalia Gramatchikova.
7. The most unusual fellow Santa Claus h2> Millennium image of Santa Claus can be traced in other cultures. Analogs of the New donors are available in all countries, with the possible exception of some African. Website offers a small top most unusual magician Russian colleagues, among them - the people of different nationalities, religions, and even sex. They are united by one thing - they bring gifts to children on New Year's or Christmas. For example, in the Netherlands and Flanders, the role of Santa Claus takes Black Pete This helper of St. Nicholas delivering gifts through the pipe to good children on the Day of St. Nicholas. And if Santa Claus delivers gifts we have one, then the black pits in the Netherlands, according to legend, a few. In addition to supplying gifts, Black Pete is able to whip to flog those who misbehaved - he carries a list of obedient and disobedient children. Santa Claus, there is a woman in Italy. Gifts for children here carries Fairy Befana - an old woman with a hooked nose, a hat and a broom. Scientists insist that Befana is derived from the pagan Roman goddess Strenia, a folk legend about a certain old woman from Bethlehem, who refused to accompany the Magi to the baby Jesus. Later, the woman realized her mistake and has since fairy flies all kids, hoping to find the Christ child and give him his gift. Spain there is a Santa Claus, and the official Santa Claus - Papa Noel, but the most interesting character - in the autonomous Basque Country. It brings gifts to children Olenttsero - a poor old man in national homespun clothes, a black beret and sandals. Olenttsero always with a pipe in his mouth and a bottle of good Spanish wine in hand. A good children, he gives presents, and delinquent - a piece of burning coal. On Liberty Island itself Santa Claus there, but there are just three of the king, who on New Year give gifts - Gaspar, Melchior and Balthazar < /. These three good magician, who performed a wish make for the New Year, in fact, are the magi. They saw the star of Bethlehem and, following her, came to Jerusalem and then to Bethlehem where they worshiped Mary with Child and brought gifts. In Cuba, these wizards are called kings, and the New Year, so - the Day of the Kings. In Asia, decided to celebrate the New Year according to the lunar calendar, a holiday here and marks the arrival of spring. But without fellow Morozov also can not do. For example, in China, the grandfather is called Shen Dan Laozhen In the New Year's Eve he always looks in each house and leaves Laixi - an envelope with a small amount of money to be happy. The Chinese believe that their New Year's elder studied philosophy of Confucius has wushu and aikido. It is believed that it also repels evil spirits. In Japan today, just two wizards. In the role of Santa Claus for many centuries here is the main figure of the New Year holiday - God Hotei Osho , a feature of which is that he has great ears and eyes in the back of his head. But recently, there are two other Christmas-New Year's characters: Segatsu-san and Oji-san Segatsu-san called "Mr. New Year" or "Mr. January". But his "younger" brother, Oji-san is a "tracing" of the American Santa Claus. He is dressed in traditional red coat, brings gifts on the sea delivers them to the reindeer and give away all the children. Add that different Santa Claus has even inside Russia. in Karelia Santa Pakkaine name in Bashkortostan and Tatarstan - Shoo Babai; Buryatia - Sagan Ubugunov; Mari El - Yushto Kugyza and Lumudyr; Chuvashia - Hel Mucha. Yakutia - Chiskhan or Ehee Dyyl and Khaarchaana; in the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous District (Russia, Siberia) - Yamal Iri.