Comedian — Shrovetide (20/03)

Now many have forgotten, and someone never knew that Shrovetide — is not just a meeting of spring. Previously, Maslenitsa was called Comoedian in Russia, marking the onset of spring equinox. The spring equinox, which in the modern calendar falls on March 20 or 21, — is one of the four main holidays of the year in the ancient pagan tradition and one of the oldest. Essentially — is a agricultural New Year.

In addition to the meeting of Spring and the celebration of the beginning of the New Year, the Slavic Bear God was also revered on this day. It is believed that in ancient times the bear was named Kom ( and hence the saying — « the first pancake to the comas », that is, to the bears ). Therefore, in the early morning, before breakfast, with songs, dances and jokes, the villagers carried the Bear God « the pancakes » baked for the holiday ( and laid them on stumps. And after that, feasts and wide walks began.

They were waiting for the comodice, carefully prepared for it: steep slopes of the coast were poured for skiing, high ice and snowy mountains, fortresses, and towns were built. It was considered obligatory to go to the bathhouse before the last days of the holiday in order to wash away all the bad things that happened last year. Work these days was prohibited.

On the last day of festive festivities, they mainly performed ritual actions, seeing off the winter. They burned the stuffed Marena on the pole, which was imposed on « by the » — old, who served their Oberegi or just an old rag with a conspiracy to burn everything bad and outlived on fire.

Immediately after the holiday, heavy weekdays began, people took up agricultural work, which lasted all the warm time of the year.