Bulgaria Honors St. Athanasius Half Past Winter
The Bulgarian Orthodox Church celebrates on Saturday, January 18, the Day of St. Athanasius, who is the ruler of snow and ice.
In Bulgarian folk beliefs, the holiday - known as Atanasovden - is said to mark the middle of winter, when the season starts to change over, setting the ground for spring.
Atanasovden, like the feast of St. Anthony on the previous day, is a holiday of the blacksmiths, ironmongers, cutters and shoeing smiths, as well as a holiday to show respect to those who are ill.
Therefore, Bulgarian tradition has it that early in the morning women would bake a small flat loaf of bread, decorated with two dogs, who keep the diseases away from people.
Those who bear the name of the saint (Atanas and derivatives) also celebrate on January 18.
- » The Fisherman and the Goldfish Have Their Statue in Bulgaria’s Varna
- » A to JazZ Festival Brings US Legends to Sofia in July
- » Zenith Fusion Festival: Music, Cinema and Insight into Life in Rhodope Mountains
- » Sofia Joins Fete de la Musique With Free Concerts on Three Stages
- » Bulgarian-born Artist Christo Amazes World with Floating Piers
- » Israeli Author Ellis Shuman to Present New Book in Bulgaria