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Holidays

Notes:

Before the Fall, holidays paralleled some Earth holy days.

After the Fall, Sartor tried to recapture its greatness in as many traditions as could be recovered. Most important to Sartor was the Twelve Blessed Things--a celebration that began at the twelfth hour of the twelfth day of the twelfth month. In the days of Old Sartor, that meant downing tools or pens, and opening the mind to communions with one another, the world, and beyond. The dena Yeresbeth became the universal circle at that time--but because humans are finite, it was only that hour.

That tradition was lost in the Fall. The holiday was resumed, but took a different form, as humans could no longer talk mind to mind--dena Yeresbeth was forgotten. So everyone would down tools or pens, take up a candle, and march in a circle around a given route--in Eidervaen, the twelve stations. If the weather was bad, the candles would be set in windows. From that day until New Year's people were meant to resolve problems, keep promises, and reflect.

New Year's Week was the time for renewals. Oath Day and Debt Day being almost universal. Very important also was MidSummer's Day, which in Sartor kicked off the music festival, one of the most important events in the world. After Sartor's disappearance for a century, that shifted to Colend. In the northern hemisphere, when New Year's Week falls during the height of summer, therefore Midsummer's Day becomes Midwinter's Day.

Fall and Harvest Festival takes many forms, but at the center is harvest.

Sartoran history is full of the rise and fall of special days, as the culture evolved. Before the days of Connar and Alian Dei, the Sartoran court was so locked into ritual that the constraint had become an impossible weight. At that time, holidays were so freighted with political obligation that courtiers were pretty much doing nothing but carrying out rituals, while the rest of the world carried on with life. The absurdity was recognized, but no one dared break it until Alian became queen. With one stroke she divested Sartor of everything save New Year's, Flower Day, the Midsummer Music Festival, and Harvest, but that quickly was deemed too far, and the Twelfth was re-established.

As kingdoms broke away from Sartoran governance or influence, the Twelfth was dropped, its practices shifted to New Year's Firstday, as that holiday was regarded as particularly Sartoran.

There are lots of other special days, and of course in many lands celebrations of various rulers' birthdays.

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Page last modified on September 23, 2012, at 07:55 AM