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Christmas in Ukraine

 

Christmas in Ukraine

Christmas pattern of didukh (or Christmas tree) and Angel

The Ukrainian Christmas festive days according to the Julian calendar, start on 6 January, Christmas Eve, and end on 19 January, "Jordan" or Epiphany.[1]

Contents

  • Svyatyi Mykolai (Saint Nicholas) 1
  • Sviaty Vechir (Holy Evening) 2
  • Koliadky (Caroling) 3
  • Didukh (Grandfather) 4
  • Shopka (Nativity scene) 5
  • Gallery 6
  • See also 7
  • References 8

Svyatyi Mykolai (Saint Nicholas)

The image of Svyatyi Mykolai as a person who brings the Christmas gifts for children, the feast of which is marked on 24 December. It is supposed, that children should find their Christmas gifts under their pillow on that morning.

Sviaty Vechir (Holy Evening)

Sviata Vecherya or "Holy Supper" is the central tradition of the Christmas Eve celebrations in Ukrainian homes. The dinner table sometimes has a few wisps of hay on the embroidered table cloth as a reminder of the manger in Bethlehem.

Kutia (sweet grain pudding) is traditionally served at the Ukrainian Christmas dinner table. It is often the first dish in the traditional twelve-dish Christmas Eve supper (also known as Svyaty Vechir) and is rarely served at other times of the year.[2]

Koliadky (Caroling)

At the end of the Sviata Vechera the family often sings Ukrainian Shchedryk" became the basis for the world famous Christmas carol, "Carol of the Bells". Another well-known carol is Boh predvičnyj narodilsja. [3]

Didukh (Grandfather)

When the children see the first star in the eastern evening sky, symbolizing the trek of the Three Wise Men, the Sviata Vecherya may begin. In farming communities the head of the household now brings in a sheaf of wheat called the didukh which represents the importance of the ancient and rich wheat crops of Ukraine, the staff of life through the centuries. Didukh means literally "grandfather spirit" so it symbolizes the family's ancestors. In city homes a few stalks of golden wheat in a vase are often used to decorate the table.

Shopka (Nativity scene)

Shopka is a traditional portable nativity scene used to represent nativity and other figures in a puppet form.

Gallery

2006 Christmas stamp, showing St. Nicholas and children 
Religious painting showing the Adoration of the Shepherds 
Caroling in Lviv 
Kutya 
Didukh in L'viv 

See also

References

  1. ^ Christmas Traditions
  2. ^ Sviat Vechir
  3. ^
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