Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Of the summer solstice, the romanian blouse and Sanziene

When I was a little girl and my summers were mostly spent with my grandparents in the countryside, I would fall asleep, every night, reading fairy stories. No Tinkerbells here, but old-time Romanian folk stories of a magical valley and its inhabitants, from giants to beautiful princesses to fairies. No wonder I believed in them when the sky was so clear and a perfect shade of midnight blue that made the stars look like tiny fairies sprinkling their dust.

I relive the same magical atmosphere of those nights every year on the night to the 24th of June. There's just something so compellingly celestial and spiritual about a night when both the summer equinox and the traditional ritual of the Sanziene coincide, as if ancestral spirits come back to kidnap us from our concrete-confined quotidian and transport us back to the days when the Sun and the Moon were the governing forces of life. I may also have been watching an episode or 5 of Outlander...

The Sanziene is quite a feminist celebration one could argue. It's about young girls finding their soulmate and praying to ancient spirits to show them their path in life. It's all cradelled in nature and dictated by the season and flora, most of the rituals being based on plants and rain water and moonlight. Some of the nostalgia it comes with nowadays relates to the quiet and harmonious village life, something Romania still has plenty of but is generally ignored or disregarded.

So why not forget about the strings of modern life and give ourselves, if only for a few hours under the starry sky, to the elements, to traditions and to the world around us.


Support this movement of bringing back Romanian traditions as well as solidifying the status of the romanian blouse, the IE, as a simbol of national identity, by following the LaBlouseRoumaine on facebook HERE.


  1. Interesting Article. I agree with most of it and bringing back traditions is great! Except it s called the summer solstice not equinox!!

    1. Hi Klara! I'm glad you liked it and thanks for pointing out my little mistake - as you can see, I've corrected myself!


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