What’s behind February 14
This is not a typical Bulgarian holiday, but in recent years it has been gaining popularity in Bulgaria. On February 14, more and more people give hearts or flowers to their loved ones to show their love and deep affection.
There are different theories about the origin of the day, many experts believe that it dates back to the Roman Empire, during the reign of Claudius II 240 BC.
According to some legends, Claudius did not want men to marry in war because he thought that they were better soldiers precisely as unattached men. However, secret weddings took place, for this very reason Bishop Valentine, who defied the law, was imprisoned and later executed. The date was 14 February.
King Henry VII of England officially declared February 14 the Feast of St. Valentine’s Day much later- in 1537.
On this day we also celebrate Trifon Zarezan.
It is also called Vintner’s Day – in honour of Saint Trifon. On February 14, winegrowers, falconers, gardeners and innkeepers (according to the Gregorian calendar) celebrate. Tradition dictates that early in the morning the hostess kneads bread – fresh or sourdough. Then he gets down to cooking a hen, which he stuffs with rice or bulgur. It should be boiled whole, and then toasted on a sadjak. In a new woolen bag is put the cake, the hen and a barrel of wine. With these bags the men are sent to the vineyard.
The men cut three sticks in the vineyard, water the vines with the wine brought. This ritual is called “slashing”. After that, a “king of the vineyards” is elected. He is garlanded with a wreath of vine sticks, which he wears on his head, and another wreath, which he puts over his shoulders. He sits on a wheel. The vine-growers pull the cart and, to the sound of bagpipes, bagpipes and drums, head for the village or town. The whole group goes around with him and brings health to every home.
In Bulgaria, many people celebrate mainly Trifon Zarezan.
But still, among the younger ones, Valentine’s Day supporters are more and more common. There is always a dispute about which holiday to honour. However, we will leave the polemics and wish you a happy holiday, whichever you choose to celebrate. It is important to have fun with wine and love!