Estonian video about Slovenian song  "Marko skace"

Activities linked with Harvest in Lihula :


Estonian ring game "Me lähme rukist lõikama"

Estonian Love song MUINASLUGU MUUSIKAS (composer Raimond Valgre) you can see here

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St. Martin's Day, also known as the Feast of St. Martin, Martinstag or Martinmas, the Feast of St Martin of Tours or Martin le Misércordieux, is a time for feasting celebrations , originating in France. The famous legend of St. Martins life is that he once cut his cloak in half to share with a beggar during a snowstorm, to save the beggar from dying of the cold.

The tradition of celebrating Martinmas spread to Germany in the 16th century and later to Scandinavia and the Baltics . Martinmas is also known as the celebration that marks the end of field work and the beginning of the harvesting period. Following these holidays, women traditionally moved their work indoors for the winter, while men would proceed to work in the forests.

In Estonia, Martinmas signifies the merging of Western European customs with the local Balto-Finnic pagan traditions, it also contains elements of earlier worship of the dead as well as certain year-end celebration that predates Christianity.

Among Estonians, Martinmas (November 10) marks the end of the period of All Souls, as well as the autumn period in the Estonian popular calendar when the souls of ancestors were worshiped, a period that lasted from November 1 to Martinmas (November 11).

In old times only men perfomed the so called Martinmas run, in the end of 19 century also girls disguised themselves as men going from door to door in Martinmas evening.They put on black clothes and fur-coats, also mask their faces with the dark wood ashes to be unrecognizable. They perfomed the souls of ancestors who returned to their home.

They performed mardipere – its something like martinfamily. Mardi-mother, mardi-father and children. They sang songs, danced, wished the fertile next year to householders and asked for benefactions. Mainly the people gave food them. If somebody didnt want to let martinfamily into his house, it was the bad omen for this house and therefore it was considered better to let martinfamily in.

Martinmas run ended with big party in the last the house that they visited, there they eat all food together and shared other gifts between themselves.

In old times estonians also told fortunes in Martinmas. If the Martinmas was snowy, the next year will be fertile. If it was rainy day, they considered that there will be much snow in the winter but next summer will be cold and rainy. If there is a cold weather in Martinmas, the Christmas days will be also cold .

It remains popular today, especially among young people and the rural population. Martinmas celebrates the end of the agrarian year and the beginning of the winter period. On this day children disguise themselves as men and go from door to door, singing songs and telling jokes to receive sweets.