Russians Getting Ready for Maslenitsa Celebration

Russians call farewell to winter “Maslenitsa” and fill the celebration of this holiday with joyful expectations of spring. The date of the holiday changes every year depending on the date of the Easter celebration. In 2021, Maslenitsa will last from March 8 to March 14.  

Russians believe that during the whole week of Maslenitsa one should have as much fun as possible, as this will bring prosperity and abundance to his house. The inhabitants of the country bake pancakes, arrange folk festivals and burn a scarecrow. This ritual symbolises the farewell to winter and the welcome of spring, referring to birth through death. It is noted that even though the Russian orthodox church called the holiday pagan and tried to cease its celebrations, country residents prefer to save old traditions.

Every day of the week in the Maslenitsa period has its own meaning. Thus, on Monday, people begin to bake pancakes, the first of which must be given to the commemoration of the dead. On the same day, they make a scarecrow that personifies winter. On Tuesday, young guys and girls show signs of attention to each other, get to know each other better and spend time together. Usually, girls who would like to get married treat guys to dishes that they themselves cooked. The time for big festive feasts begins on Wednesday when sons-in-law, together with their wives, visit their mother-in-law for pancakes.

From the fourth day, all work in the house stops and the real celebration of Maslenitsa begins. On Friday, it is the mother-in-law’s turn to visit her daughter and her family. On Saturday, it is customary for a young wife to invite her husband’s relatives to pancakes. According to tradition, after the end of the meal, the eldest woman from the family should either praise or scold the wife, give her advice on cooking and housekeeping in general. Finally, the weekends with Forgiveness Sunday. On this day, noisy festivities with fairs and mass entertainment events take place.

Ru-Main, 04.03.2021 

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