Interesting traditions of celebrating the New Year in Europe.
French Santa Claus is called Per Noel. He comes on New Year’s Eve and leaves gifts in children’s shoes.
The one who gets the bean, baked in a New Year’s cake, gets the title of “bean king” and on the festive night everyone obeys his orders. Santana – wooden or clay figures, which are placed near the Christmas tree.
Despite the fact that the French are considered to be a loving nation, on New Year’s Eve they prefer not to kiss, but to gorge themselves and get drunk. By tradition, a good host-winemaker should definitely clink glasses with a barrel of wine, congratulate her on a holiday and drink for the next harvest. And since wine in France does not only make you lazy, you can imagine what fun they have there.
But in the Czech Republic and Slovakia a cheerful little man comes to the children, dressed in a shaggy fur coat, a tall lamb cap, with a box behind him. His name is Mikulas. For those who studied well, he will always find gifts.
In Holland, Santa Claus sails on the ship. Children happily meet him on the pier. He loves funny jokes and surprises and often gives children marzipan fruits, toys, and candy flowers.
In Germany, Santa Claus appears on a donkey. At bedtime, the children put a plate on the table for gifts that Santa Claus will bring to them, and put hay in their shoes – a treat for his donkey.
And in Hungary, in the “fateful” first second of the New Year quotes, they prefer to whistle – and not using fingers, but children’s pipes, horns, whistles.
It is believed that they drive away evil spirits from the home and call for joy, well-being. Preparing for the holiday, the Hungarians do not forget about the magical power of the New Year’s dishes: beans and peas retain the power of mind and body, apples – beauty and love, nuts can protect from harm, garlic – from diseases, and honey – sweeten life
On the Apennine Peninsula in Italy, the New Year begins on the sixth of January. All Italian kids are looking forward to the good Fairy Befana. She arrives at night on a magic broomstick, opens the doors with a small golden key and, entering the room where the children sleep, fills children’s stockings with gifts, specially hung from the fireplace. Anyone who has studied poorly or naughty, Befana leaves a pinch of ash or coal. It’s a shame, but he deserved it!