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Festivals of Western Europe

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Author Topic: Festivals of Western Europe  (Read 3227 times)
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« Reply #15 on: April 29, 2009, 01:31:14 pm »

Customs vary from parish to parish. In most places, Saint John's or Midsummer, rather than Watpurgis Eve, is the traditional time for building bonfires.

STORE BEDEDAG (Great Prayer Day) The fourth Friday after Easter

    This day of prayer dates back to the time of Christian VII, when his worldly Prime Minister, Count Johann Friedrich von Struensee, decided upon one great day of prayer as a substitute for the many holy days which the Church observed.

    Bells in every church announce the eve of Store Bededag. In olden days it was customary for Copenhagen burghers to greet the spring by putting on new clothes and strolling along the city ramparts. Then they went home and ate varme hveder, a kind of small square wheat bread, served piping hot. Today people still eat the traditional bread. They still dress in spring finery but, instead of walking along the ramparts, they promenade on the famous Langelinie, or boulevard which faces Copenhagen's water front.

    On Store Bededag stores and places of business are closed and special church services held.

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