Hello and welcome back to a pick of our #SuperstitionSat Sessions’ Highlights once more. Today is Easter Day, so I hope you are having a nice time, if you are celebrating it. It is also Passover right now, as well as Ramadan, so our theme yesterday (16/04/22) was superstitions about Easter, Passover & Other Seasonal Festivities currently taking place all over the world. All best wishes to everyone!
Our first Highlight was from Andrea L Cheetham, who shared a superstition that appears to have been recorded by a linguist called Heinrich von Wlislocki in the region of Transylvania, as referenced in a book by Charles Godfrey Leland. In this area, Roma girls were said to throw their shoes or boots onto willow trees on the eve of New Year’s Day, Saint George’s Day or Easter – but they were only supposed to try and get the shoe onto the tree for a maximum of nine times. If the shoe ever got caught in the branches, that would mean they would get married within a year. This reminded me of tossing tennis shoes over power lines – seen as some kids from my generation as a rite of passage from childhood to teenage years – if you had shoes to spare… Some places like Victorian England also threw old shoes at newly-weds before they headed out on their honeymoon – for luck, mind! Certainly not to hurt anyone on purpose (I hope).
Our second Highlight was from Christine Valentor who shared a tale about one of my favourite snacks: hot cross buns. These days, you might be able to find them all year round in supermarkets in the UK, but they used to only be baked for Easter. Buns in the oven on a Good Friday are said to never ever go mouldy, and for that they are considered especially lucky. For that reason, they might have been hung from ceilings to protect buildings from calamities like fire. A pub in London called The Widow’s Son is known to carry out a tradition of hanging hot cross buns from the ceiling, but this is done to remember a local sailor that never returned from sea. On his departure, he had promised his widowed mother that he would return for Easter to eat a hot cross bun – but sadly, he never made it back. The heartbroken mum continued to collect hot cross buns for Easter, every year – and the “Bun Day Ceremony” at The Widow’s Son still carries on today!
Tweet by Christine Valentor. Photo credit “A medieval baker and his apprentice”, from a Swedish cookbook housed at The Bodleian Library, Oxford.
Our last Highlight was from The BabaYaga Project, who shared the lovely Pysanky eggs made in Ukraine using a wax-resist method. I can never pass on these beautifully decorated eggs. They have been featured in our Highlights before, for our Food & Cooking Session on March 5th 2022. I was looking forward to seeing them again for Easter, and I hope we will get to see them again for next year.
That was all for today’s Highlights. I hope you will be able to join us next week (23/04/22), for a theme I have personally been looking forward to. It’s going to be:
SUPERSTITIONS OF BUILDINGS, CASTLES & OTHER HERITAGE SITES
Have you visited a heritage site with a curious tale – like standing stones or public monuments? Maybe you work at a historic house known for some spine-chilling ghost stories?! Tell us all about it next Saturday!
Until then, thank you for participating in #SuperstitionSat. Whether you’re old, new or just passing through, your presence is very much appreciated and I am glad to see you stop by. Have a lovely week ahead!
– Superstition Sam 🐾