Martisor, The symbol of spring.
1st of March…the beginning of longer days, the sun is shining more, the snowdrops are out, and nature feels to be awakening. I love spring.
In Romanian tradition, the Martisor is the symbol of spring and the revival of nature! Is a white and red string that has a very old history and is said to protect you from evil for all of March and bring you good luck, health, and strength if you wear it (can be added to a broch or even as a bracelet).
The red colour symbolises vitality and life and is associated with the passion of women, while the white thread represents victory, snow, and the wisdom of men. I have worn a Martisor in March since I can remember, is a beautiful tradition that a few European countries (Romania, Bulgaria, Italy) still celebrate. I used to get so many from men in my life (boyfriends, colleagues, dad, cousins) and I used to wear them all for all of March 😊. Still do, but nowadays is just my English husband – that loves this tradition and goes to a Romanian shop every year to buy me one and of course my dad that sends me one through the post every year.
There is also the legend of Baba Dochia, one of the most popular legends in Romanian mythology.
The legend says that Dochia was the daughter of Decebal, the Romanian Dac ruler. Her beauty was renowned throughout the whole country. When the Romans have come to conquer Dacia, The Roman Ruler, Traian fell in love with Dochia and asks her to marry him. She refuses and runs to the mountains, in the middle of winter, wearing nine coats. As she runs faster, she starts getting warm, starts taking her nine coats off and ends up freezing to death as winter is getting colder and colder.
The tradition is kept today, as women choose a day in March – from the 1st to the 9th to be their Baba! If that day is sunny, they will have a great year, and if that day is rainy, they will have a rough year! (I still do it every year too! 😊)
I don’t know about you, but as soon as March comes, I start a bit of spring cleaning and spring decorating, I start thinking about the Easter BBQs, planting new flowers in the garden, summer holidays, and lots of cocktails in the garden. I am so ready for spring and warmer days!
Have a great March friend and let’s all embrace Spring!
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Cristina is a food photographer, food stylist, and recipe developer, loves travelling and spending time with friends.