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Polish Traditions, Customs, and Folklore

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Polish Customs, Traditions, & Folklore is organized by months beginning with December and Advent, St. Nicholas Day, the Wigilia (Christmas Eve) nativity plays, caroling and then New Year celebrations. It proceeds from the Shrovetide period to Ash Wednesday, Lent, the celebration of spring, Holy Week customs then superstitions, beliefs and rituals associated with farming, P Polish Customs, Traditions, & Folklore is organized by months beginning with December and Advent, St. Nicholas Day, the Wigilia (Christmas Eve) nativity plays, caroling and then New Year celebrations. It proceeds from the Shrovetide period to Ash Wednesday, Lent, the celebration of spring, Holy Week customs then superstitions, beliefs and rituals associated with farming, Pentecost, Corpus Christi, midsummer celebrations, harvest festivities, wedding rites, nameday celebrations, birth and death rituals. Line illustrations enhance this rich and varied treasury of folklore. Many of the customs and traditions found herein are extinct even in today's Poland. World wars, massive immigration, the loss of the oral tradition, urbanization and politics have changed the face of a once agrarian people and their accompanying life style. In the U.S., the desire for membership within the "melting pot", marriages outside one's ethnic group, movement to the suburbs away from the "old" communities where customs and traditions were once strong, further weakened the link. Although the purpose and meaning may have been lost and forgotten, the oczepiny ceremony (the unveiling) is still the mainstay of almost every wedding where the bride declares Polish heritage. Many Polish American communities still reenact the harvest celebrations, reminding themselves of their ancestors' reverence for the grains and gifts of bread. Eight million Americans still claim their ancestry as Polish, many still diligently practicing that which they learned at their parents' and grandparents' knees.


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Polish Customs, Traditions, & Folklore is organized by months beginning with December and Advent, St. Nicholas Day, the Wigilia (Christmas Eve) nativity plays, caroling and then New Year celebrations. It proceeds from the Shrovetide period to Ash Wednesday, Lent, the celebration of spring, Holy Week customs then superstitions, beliefs and rituals associated with farming, P Polish Customs, Traditions, & Folklore is organized by months beginning with December and Advent, St. Nicholas Day, the Wigilia (Christmas Eve) nativity plays, caroling and then New Year celebrations. It proceeds from the Shrovetide period to Ash Wednesday, Lent, the celebration of spring, Holy Week customs then superstitions, beliefs and rituals associated with farming, Pentecost, Corpus Christi, midsummer celebrations, harvest festivities, wedding rites, nameday celebrations, birth and death rituals. Line illustrations enhance this rich and varied treasury of folklore. Many of the customs and traditions found herein are extinct even in today's Poland. World wars, massive immigration, the loss of the oral tradition, urbanization and politics have changed the face of a once agrarian people and their accompanying life style. In the U.S., the desire for membership within the "melting pot", marriages outside one's ethnic group, movement to the suburbs away from the "old" communities where customs and traditions were once strong, further weakened the link. Although the purpose and meaning may have been lost and forgotten, the oczepiny ceremony (the unveiling) is still the mainstay of almost every wedding where the bride declares Polish heritage. Many Polish American communities still reenact the harvest celebrations, reminding themselves of their ancestors' reverence for the grains and gifts of bread. Eight million Americans still claim their ancestry as Polish, many still diligently practicing that which they learned at their parents' and grandparents' knees.

30 review for Polish Traditions, Customs, and Folklore

  1. 4 out of 5

    Robert Johnson

    I regularly check this book to learn what my ancestors did throughout the year. Today, for example, is Groundhog Day in North America, but what about in Poland?: Whereas Americans use animals to predict the weather for the following six weeks until the official spring in March, the Poles of the Tarnów-Rzeszow region used the bear. If on the day of Matka Boska Gromniczna, the bear came out of his winter lair and found frost, he would knock down and pull apart his hiding place because he would exp I regularly check this book to learn what my ancestors did throughout the year. Today, for example, is Groundhog Day in North America, but what about in Poland?: Whereas Americans use animals to predict the weather for the following six weeks until the official spring in March, the Poles of the Tarnów-Rzeszow region used the bear. If on the day of Matka Boska Gromniczna, the bear came out of his winter lair and found frost, he would knock down and pull apart his hiding place because he would expect that winter would end shortly. However, if the day was a damp one, he came out and spent time mending it because winter would hang on for quite some time yet. Source: "Polish Customs, Traditions & Folklore", p. 68 http://www.poloniamusic.com/Book_of_P...

  2. 5 out of 5

    Kathryn

    While the customs and traditions take a bit of an idealized view of what life was like for families in the poor farm villages of Poland, there are a lot of good tidbits here about holiday customs, birth and death rituals, and children’s games. In a way, reading this made me kind of sad knowing that a people with such a rich cultural heritage weren’t able to observe most of these customs and traditions because of war, poverty and disease that plagued Poland and followed those who fled the country While the customs and traditions take a bit of an idealized view of what life was like for families in the poor farm villages of Poland, there are a lot of good tidbits here about holiday customs, birth and death rituals, and children’s games. In a way, reading this made me kind of sad knowing that a people with such a rich cultural heritage weren’t able to observe most of these customs and traditions because of war, poverty and disease that plagued Poland and followed those who fled the country in the early 20th century. Within two generations of coming to United States, most of these traditions and games were forgotten and replaced by more Western European activities.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Eric

    Doesn't cover folk stories at all should be renamed polish catholic traditions no Slavic mythology mentioned either. Doesn't cover folk stories at all should be renamed polish catholic traditions no Slavic mythology mentioned either.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Alissa

    This is a great book; the only recommendation I would make is that it could use more photos or illustrations.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Patricia Nelson-Foil

  6. 5 out of 5

    Julie M Andruscavage

  7. 5 out of 5

    Annie Trinsey- christie

  8. 5 out of 5

    megan

  9. 5 out of 5

    Melissa Cynova

  10. 4 out of 5

    Cfranz

  11. 4 out of 5

    Abby Bielski

  12. 5 out of 5

    Stacy

  13. 4 out of 5

    Marlise Grey

  14. 4 out of 5

    Maureen

  15. 5 out of 5

    Janine Samz

  16. 5 out of 5

    ReD

  17. 4 out of 5

    Danielle Airola

  18. 4 out of 5

    Kevin Hawkins

  19. 4 out of 5

    Hannah

  20. 5 out of 5

    Andy

  21. 5 out of 5

    Victoria

  22. 4 out of 5

    Jackie

  23. 4 out of 5

    Nicolette Froelicher

  24. 5 out of 5

    Kris

  25. 4 out of 5

    Andrew

  26. 5 out of 5

    Joseph Serwach

  27. 5 out of 5

    Jen

  28. 5 out of 5

    Jessica Tack

  29. 5 out of 5

    Alex N. Uszacki

  30. 5 out of 5

    Donna Gawell

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