Posts filed under ‘.Romania’


ROMANIA: Mărţişor

March 1, 2018 at 5:25 am Leave a comment

A world of illustration

Celebrating illustrated children’s books from around the world

August 3, 2016 at 8:25 pm Leave a comment

Impressions d’enfance


August 31, 2015 at 8:25 pm Leave a comment

The Egg Painter

The Easter tradition of dying eggs is practiced by people all over the world, but in Ciocanesti, a small village in Romania’s northern region of Bukovina, this tradition has evolved into an art form. Exquisitely hand painted with intricate traditional designs, each of these eggs takes hours to create and is among the things the people here are most proud of. This docu-short offers a glimpse into the art and craft of egg painting.
A film by: Titus-Armand Napirlica (
Egg Painter: Elena Craciunescu (
Music: Johnny Ripper (
With the Support of: Dorin Dumitru Taranu (


April 8, 2015 at 5:25 am Leave a comment

Winter Holidays in Romania

In Romania we celebrate Saint Nicholas Day, Christmas and New Year.

Saint Nicholas Day is celebrated on the night of December 5th, when children are cleaning and polishing their boots carefully and put them by the door or on the windowsill to wait for St. Nicholas’ (Moş Nicolae) visit. He is generous to parents as well as children, putting a little present in each boot. In some areas, branches or thin twigs are left as a warning that behavior needs to improve. It is one of the most important Romanian holidays.

Christmas is known as ‘Crăciun‘ in Romania and is celebrated on December 25th. The celebrations begin with the decoration of the Christmas Tree on Ajunul Craciunului (Christmas Eve). Romanian children receive presents from Moş Crăciun (Santa Claus) in the evening of Christmas Eve and do not leave milk and cookies out for Moş Crăciun.

Carols, called ‘colinde‘ in Romanian, are a very important part of the Romanian Christmas festivities. Throughout the Christmas season, children visit every house in the neighborhood singing carols such as Steaua sus răsare (The Star) and Moş Crăciun (Santa Claus) and reciting traditional poems and legends. In return for such performances, carolers receive apples, nuts, traditional cakes (cozonaci), and sometimes even money from each house.

Traditional Romanian Christmas meals include saramale (stuffed cabbage rolls) with mămăligă (polenta), many types of pork sausages, roast pork, pickles, beef salad. The traditional Christmas dessert is called “cozonac”. It is a rich sweet bread filled with ground walnuts, raisins,dried fruits, similar to the Italian panettone. It requires a long preparation time that begins early on the morning of Christmas Eve.

Romanians welcome the New Year with the traditions that have been around for centuries. The children as well as the adults, take part in the joyous celebrations with great enthusiasm. On New Year’s Eve in Romania, children sing Sorcova and Pluguşorul. The songs wish good luck, happiness and success.

Download: .pdf


Romanian Winter Season Traditions
Spending the winter holidays in Romania: local traditions

December 18, 2010 at 8:55 pm Leave a comment


Romanian carol Steaua sus rasare

Christmas and New Year Paganism in Roumanian Folklore 1928

On Christmas Eve and the following days until Epiphany, one would also meet in the streets groups of boys carrying a huge star, and singing:
“Who receives the star,
The bright, beautiful star?”

Christmas in Romania:

On the first Christmas day, children walk in the streets of snow covered towns and villages, when holding in their hands a star made of board and paper with a biblical scenes painted in water colors or an icon showing Virgin Mary and baby Jesus, they sing somewhat of a question:
“Do you receive the pretty star,
Pretty and so bright?
It has appeared on the earth
Just like God through it would be right
And it could be seen on high,
Just like we did, in the sky.

The “Star Carol” is a tradition during the 3 days of Romanian Christmas.While holding the star in the hands the children sing:

“The star has appeared on high,
Like a big secret in the sky,
The star is bright,
May all your wishes turn out right…”

December 18, 2010 at 11:11 am 4 comments

Baba Dochia

After a romanian folktale about the days of Baba Dochia
Download: .pdf
1A long time ago, there was an old woman forgotten by time and kindness, who lived in a cottage of stone, up in the mountains. Baba Dochia was her name.

It was so cold inside her soul that she was always dressed up with nine lambskins.

Only her son Dragobete and the sheep lived with her.

2One day, Dragobete marries Nora, a beautiful and kind girl, and brings her home.

But Baba Dochia didn’t like Nora, and made her life hard, giving her odd jobs.

That year it was a cold and long winter. One day, Baba Dochia blames Nora for the bad weather and sends her to bring spring flowers.

3Saddened by her new task, Nora left without knowing where to go to find spring flowers in the winter snow.

Wandering in the cold, she meets a kind man, Mărţişor. She tells him her sad story, and Mărţişor gives her some white snowdrops that bring spring.

Happy, Nora is running back home with the snowdrops. It was the first day of March.

4When Baba Dochia sees Nora with the snowdrops, she thinks that spring has come back and leaves for the mountains with her sheep.

She is dressed with the nine lambskins, but it rains on the mountain and the skins get soaked and heavy. Dochia has to get rid of them, one lambskin every day.

After nine days, the frost comes back, the rain turns into ice, and Baba Dochia and her sheep turn into stone.

You can still see the Babele stones up in the mountains.

Baba Dochia
Rhea or the Great Mother with the name Dochia and Dochiana in Romanian legends.

March 7, 2009 at 5:20 pm Leave a comment

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