Archive for the ‘traditions in Denmark’ Tag

Sankt Hans

Update: some photos of the fire.

Getting ready for the traditional Saint Hans  fire, evening  june 23. Burning a witch, singing the midsummer song and listen to a midsummer speech. This is how we are celebrating this evening today. Of course there is a story to tell about why. I will try to translate a bit here:

Perhaps you know, that witches are more active on eve of church festivals? They might be collecting herbs or be travelling to meetings with other witches. To prevent them from taking a break on their journey, (you know they are flying at a broomstick) a big fire would be lighted . Both april 30th, and at june 23th were magical evenings in the past. In Germany, the witches flew to the highest mountain, Bloksbjerg, to have their meeting on that night. Later on we forgot about april 30, but june 23 is still celebrated all over the country, and we are still preventing witches from taking a break at our area. I heard in the radio next morning, that smoke from all these fires still was in the air, because of the type of weather we had that day.

Some are believing, that the idea about placing a witch on top of the fire, must have reached Denmark by German immigrants, around 1920. Singing the midsummer song are believed to have a history from 1900.