Trifon Zarezan is one of the most revered holidays on the Bulgarian lands. Ethnographers believe that it dates back to the times when the Thracians inhabited our lands, and its ritual is associated with the stormy spring celebrations in honor of Dionysius - the god of fertility, wine and fun.


St. Trifon is considered to be the patron saint of winegrowers, innkeepers and gardeners and in a newer style is celebrated on 1 February (as of 14 February). According to the Christian religion, Martyr Trifon was struck with a sword during the reign of Emperor Decius because he did not give up his faith. Bulgarian legend tells that in early February, while pruning the vineyard, Trifon saw the Holy Mother with Christ in his arms and mocked her. She was homesick for the Virgin, but she didn't say anything. Just passing by his house, she told Trifonica to run to bind her husband because he had his nose cut off. The woman ran and saw that Trifon had "gotten a little wrong" and had also cut up old growths. He was surprised to see her worried, and she explained the reason. Trifon laughed again and said he wasn't so drunk. Starting to point with the scissors, he waved and clicked his nose. This is where the various holiday names come from - Zareznovoden, Trifon Chipia, Trifon Drunkard and more.


In the Bulgarian folk calendar, Trifon Zarezan is associated with a number of ritual activities. The housewives got up at dawn, mixed the pie, roasted stuffed chicken with rice and bulgur, cooked tatmanik, roasted sudzhuk, fried eggs, poured a glass of wine and put everything in a new colorful bag. Thus, the glassy men in the house set out to prune the vines, carrying with them holy water from Jordan and ashes preserved from the Christmas Eve. As he stepped in his vineyard, every owner kept a ritual - he sprayed water and ashes, turned east to the sun, solemnly crossed himself, and cut a few sticks from his trellis, pouring the chopped place with wine and blessing with the words: so many cars of grapes! ”The freshly cut sticks were intertwined in a wreath decorating the wine bottle, the men's caps, the icons in the home. Some cast their wreaths into the river - to pour wine as abundantly as water.

Photo: mineralnibani

Photo: mineralnibani

After the vineyards were cut, the men chose a "king". Usually it was the most generous and respected man in the village, or the one whose vineyard had given birth most during the past year. The new "king" was festooned with geraniums, gimmers and young vine shoots, all sitting together on a makeshift sofa in the middle of the field.


The cheerful and bitten men went to the village, going from yard to yard, tossing wrists and blessing, and the hosts taking wine-filled pots, drawing and watering the head of the "king". In the evening, the farmers gathered in the "royal" house or in the meadow and continued to celebrate until the first roosters.


According to the people's calendar, two days after Trifonov are also holidays. They are related to fertility and are known as Trifonzi. Both feasts - Holy Virgin Mary and Simeon's Day, are honored by pregnant and unborn young women. They were forbidden from all work, especially cutting and cutting. It was believed that violators of the ban would give birth to a child with a scar ("simsano").


It is also a tradition that Simeon's Evening on the coals in the hearth is to guess what the year will be. On the day before Trifonov day the chimneys were cleaned so that the dew of the vines would not fall.


In some parts of Bulgaria it is believed that if you give money on Trifonov day - you will give all year, and if you take - you will take all year. Another belief is that whatever you meet on your way in the morning of February 1, that will be your luck all year long.


Today, the traditional pruning of the vineyards of Trifonov is preserved mainly in the regions with developed viticulture. However, everywhere young and old, they do not miss the occasion to enjoy good wine and to wish for health and well-being.

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