How to ruin someone's day, according to Latvian Midsummer beliefs

Latvian folk and traditional beliefs are full of tips on how to be lucky or rich, how to fall in love, how to predict the future based on the weather, and the like. Not all are benevolent – it turns out that Latvians have long known how to send bad luck someone else's way or even do them outright harm.

LSM does not encourage wishing ill on anyone; nor do we guarantee the rituals will bring the intended result if you do try them out.

  • If you want to mooch off someone, invite them to the sauna on Midsummer's eve.
  • If a farmer wants another farmer to have no milk, they should go to the other farmer's cows on Midsummer's eve and milk them; if the cow barn is closed, stand by the door and milk a towel instead.
  • If you sow rye on Midsummer day, the reaper or eater of the bread will be in pain [unspecified].
  • If you want someone's cows to give milk with a low fat content, follow the cows early in the morning out in the field chanting "Tev tā sūkal', man tas krējums!" [Whey for you, cream for me!]
  • The lady of the house lays nettles on windows and doorsteps on Midsummer day so that witches' bottoms would burn.
  • If you want to curse someone, wear a horse collar, take reins with you, and throw fertilized eggs in the field of that farmer.
  • On Midsummer, the first to the beer keg must be the owner of the house; if someone else goes first, they'll be unlucky.
  • On Midsummer night, undress, go to the rye field and break the tips off three-times-nine grain ears, and wish all kinds of bad luck to the owner. When the rye is reaped, all will come true.
  • If you put an egg under your arm on Midsummer and keep it there until the next Midsummer, then a dragon will hatch. [Unspecified what you could do with that dragon].


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