What to do on New Year's Eve, according to Latvian folklore

Take note – story published 1 year and 5 months ago

A New Year's Eve of some sort is celebrated in most cultures, and Latvian tradition on this day is rich. LSM's Latvian-language service has compiled some beliefs on what will happen if you do particular things on New Year's Eve.

Generally, the tradition is – don't work too much and eat a lot. And check your water source for wine.

As usual, LSM does not guarantee the outcome of any particular action.

Folk beliefs:

  • One should not start anything anew on the final days of the year, because the work will not have any blessing. 
  • One should not work much on New Year's Eve; next year will not be good then.
  • At midnight on New Year's Eve, all wells contain wine for a few minutes.
  • Sauerkraut should be eaten on New Year's Eve so that the sourness of last year is eaten; do not eat sauerkraut on New Year's Day, as the whole year will then be sour.
  • If you sew on New Year's Eve, you'll see werewolves (not specified when).
  • On New Year's Eve, toss your hat in the air; if the hat falls upright, next year will bring riches, if upside down – famine.
  • Eat dry grey peas and herring on New Year's Eve to have a lot of wealth and health next year.
  • If you go to sleep before midnight, you'll sleep through the next year.
  • Place three colors on the table on New Year's Eve: white, red, and black. Close your eyes and pick one. If it's white, the next year will be happy, if it's red – average, and if it's black, the year will be gloomy.

We wish our readers a wonderful New Year's Eve and a good New Year regardless of your herring, pea, or sauerkraut-eating habits.

The material was prepared with the information on valoda.ailab.lv.

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