Old New Year: Russians will celebrate the holiday on the night of January 14

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The Russians will celebrate the old New Year on the night of January 14. In Russia, this unofficial holiday appeared after the transition from the Julian calendar (old style) to the Gregorian (new style). Old New Year is associated with many ancient traditions and signs. Read the details in the article “Izvestia”.

Old New Year’s story

The name of the holiday old New Year can be a torture for foreigners studying Russian. But if you look, everything is easier than it seems.

In Russia, since the time of Peter I, the New Year was celebrated on January 1 according to the Julian calendar, the so-called old style. However, in 1918, thanks to a decree of the Council of People’s Commissars, chronology in Bolshevik Russia switched to the Gregorian calendar – a new style. In fact, in 1918, the holiday was born.

As a result, January 1 according to the old style was shifted to January 14 according to the new one. Due to the divergence of calendars, two New Years appeared. The Old New Year did not become an official holiday, although it was firmly preserved in the people’s memory.

By the way, similar holidays are celebrated not only in the countries of the former USSR, but also in Serbia, as well as in Greece, Montenegro, Tunisia, Algeria and other states. All of them are associated with transitions to different calendars.

Holiday signs

Old New Year is famous for its signs. It is believed that if on the eve of the old New Year one should wear new beautiful clothes of light colors, then the coming year will be successful.

On the night of January 14, our ancestors made the most secret desires, and believed that they would come true.

On January 13, people did not eat fish and poultry, as they were afraid that happiness would leave home. In the modern world, the old New Year is a good reason to visit friends and relatives and give them a treat.

On January 14, it was forbidden to lend and borrow money, so as not to scare off financial success. To paraphrase popular wisdom into modern language – on this day, you should not apply for loans and take out a mortgage. By the way, a trifle on January 14 is also not worth counting, so that the year is not without money.

One of the signs says that the year will be successful if the first guest in the house on Vasilyev’s Day (January 14) is a man. Many couples in love sought to get married on this very day. It was believed that a happy life awaits the newlyweds.

The Old New Year has always been considered an excellent excuse to settle protracted conflicts and make peace. People asked for forgiveness, which was forbidden to refuse on this day.

Are superstitions useless?

Natalya Kiselnikova, Deputy Director for Scientific and Organizational Development of the Psychological Institute of the Russian Academy of Education, told Izvestia that since ancient times superstitions have helped people feel that they can influence life in a direction favorable to them.

The most popular superstitions related to the harvest, financial wealth, peace in the family. “Some of the superstitions are based on the principle of similarity. You do some action on New Year’s, for example, put on new clothes and expect that it will carry over its effect for the whole year, ”said the psychologist.

At the same time, some superstitions arose for rational reasons. The well-known omen that sprinkling salt is a quarrel goes back to the times when salt was very expensive, but then lost its meaning.

Despite the fact that superstition is an element of magical thinking, following them helps to relieve anxiety about the future and gives a sense of control over life, concluded Kiselnikova.

A century later

Interestingly, the old New Year will not always be celebrated on January 14th. The difference between the Gregorian and Julian calendars grows every hundred years. Now it is 13 days, and from March 1, 2100 it will be 14. Therefore, after the New Year’s meeting in 2101, Russians will celebrate the old New Year on January 15.

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