Midsummer Night / Janska noc GIF Picture

Names: Slovak: Svätojanské ohne, Jánske ohne, Vajano, Vajanuo, Vajanka, Vajanok, Sobotky and so on.

Tradition has its origins in Indo-European mythology of the ancient Slavs. Each Slnovrat (solstice) in the past was understood as the beginning of a new phase suitable for regeneration of nature and humans. Summer Slnovrat (solstice) ceremonies are situated on 24th of June, the day of John the Baptist , when pagan ceremony was gradually linked to the Christian tradition, since people refused to abandon this tradition despite persecution.
Rumor has it that on this day all the elements - earth, air, water and fire have the greatest power. Therefore, in the shortest night of the year they used to burn fires and bonfires. Youth, women and men at St. John danced and sang around campfires, often also jumped over it.
Fire was considered to possess magical-cleansing function.
To represent declining sun from the sky people were sending flaming wheels running from the mountains to the valleys. Popular was also tossing torches and burning wheels on high poles. (All traditions representing importance of Sun)
The traditions of course differs from region to region. (Since Slovakia BIG!!)

Full tradition here: AKO DIVÉ HUSI - (well it's from the movie, in reality it look less perfect but still impressive, but because of industrialization of course traditions are disappearing /shrinking) At the ending we can see that it also had something to do with fertility.
Usually looks more like this: Hubová Jánske ohne xD
Also I heard that Slavs were often called people of Sun since they had so many traditions related to Sun.

Do you have similar tradition in your Country? Please write about it in comment and how you call it.


Viac tu Svätojanské ohne na Slovensku - Zlatý fond denníka SME

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