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Different New Year’s Customs

viola vonfi 

In some families, they used to bake so-called ”good luck pogácsa” on New Year’s Eve.  A coin was placed in one before baking, and whoever got it was presumed to have good luck in the coming year. (In my family, Mom fried doughnuts on New Year’s Eve, and Dad gave her a coin to put inside one.) 

At midnight of New Year’s Eve, some farmers would draw water from the well.  This was called ”aranyvíz”, or ”golden water”.  Anyone drinking from it would be liable to become rich! 

New Year’s Eve dreams were said to come true. 

New Year’s Day is often popularly called ”kiskarácsony”, or ”little Christmas”.  In some localities that is when the children receive gifts, not from the angels or the Christ Child, but from the ”New Year’s Colt”. (I never heard about this one either!)  By ”gifts” were meant apples, walnuts or pogácsa.

Another popular belief held that if girls wanted to know whether they would get married that following year, they should run to the pigsty and kick the wall of the sty.  If the pigs grunted, the girls would be tieing the knot.

May you be the one who found the good luck pogácsa this time!

viola vonfi is our correspondent from Stamford, CT.  She finds it amusing that one of her ancestors was knighted by Wallenstein during the Thirty Years’ War.


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