13th December

Today was st. Lucy’s day, and the longest night of the year is over. St. Lucy’s day was a celebration of Lucy from Sicilia, who died a martyr’s death in the year 304. Lights and fires will be lighted to keep all evil away, and after the long and dark Lucy long night, these lights will force the remaining darkness from the night away.

It was a tradition for the children to wake the parents up with breakfast on the bed, and the oldest child were supposed to be dressed as Lucy and carry the light around to keep evil away.

But acording to traditions, if girls or women wanted to know who they would marry in the future, they could find out by taking on a Lucy costume, then they peel a apple in one long tread and toss it behind their back. When she then turn around, the peeled skin is supposed to form the letter of the man she will get in the future. But if she don’t have a Lucy costume, she can instead stand before a mirror and say:

Lucia, den blide

skal fly meg at vide

hvis navn jeg skal bære,

hvis dug jeg skal brede,

hvis seng jeg skal rede,

hvis barn jeg skal have,

hvis arm jeg skal sove i.

Then, the first man she meets, is her future husband.

If you have a Rooster on your farm, it should not do any crowing during the night. Since that warns that something evil will happen. If it does happen, you have to go out right away, and check the feet of the Rooster. If they are warm, it means there will be a fire, and if they are cold, it means that someone will drown or hang themselves.

Well, that was it for today!=)

The next will be the 21st now, for Thomasmas =) But I were looking at Christmas songs on iTunes yesterday, and I found a old warm memory, so I will share that now as well =)

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12th December

Well, now I have read my entire book about old Norwegian Christmas lore! And I thought I would share some of it each day that had any importance in the past. Firstly it is the night to st. Lucy’s day, that was something entierly different in Norway. This is the dark night where all the danger in the old Norwegian Christmas starts. All big preparations should have been done by this night, and the farmers went around and made special preparations for the longest and most dangerous night of the year.

On the walls outside there would be made crosses with tar, and iron crosses would be placed in special spots around inside the house to keep all evil out.

Just what was the danger they wanted to protect from?

In Norway we had Lussi, a woman that looked like a monstrous demon, that would take away children that walked out on the night to the 13th, and she would come in and destroy the chimney if the household hadn’t done the work before christmas, then the family wouldn’t get any warmth for christmas.

It is also said that the farmer would leave the animal early this night, since this was the only night of the year that the animals could talk to each other.

A old story in Norway also said that Lussi had been the first wife of Adam, and she had tried to hide her children away from God, and thus he had cursed her children to be hidden away from humans, expect for this, the longest night of the year. One can find some similarities in this story to the story of Lilith and Adam, so maybe Lussi is just the Norwegian answer of Lilith, the mother of demons that had also been Adam’s wife, and the first real feminist :P.

But the most scary thing that could appear in this night, and also through all the nights from the 12th to the 7th of January, is Aasgardsreia, a follow of the dead, that had not in their life been moral, so they could not come to heaven, but they had never been so bad that they would be taken down to hell. Because of the name it was also believed that the old norse gods also followed in it, as it was said that Thor, the god of thunder was in the front of this follow.

They could take everything from horses to food, and they would take away the people that saw them, and opened their mouth to say anything else than the name of God or Jesus. They would come back the next day, but never again be the same. Just their souls could be taken away as well, and could only come back if the ones around them at the time called their names to call them back to their bodies.

To save yourself you could utter the name of God or Jesus, or toss yourself down in the snow and have your arms out to form a cross.

So all of you should be careful tonight ^-^