Spring is full of love and joy! Have you ever heard the story of the mărțișor? Have you ever worn one? We decorate with Spring collages flowers during this season, prepare delicious feasts, and spend time with our loved ones. But, what is the legend behind this magical lucky charm?
What is our tradition about?
The mărțișor (little March) is a red and white trinket on the left side of the shirt and symbolizes the revival of Spring – a time of rebirth. After wearing them till the end of March, we hang them on trees, and it is believed the mărțișor brings good luck, strength, health, and happiness! Red symbolizes love, beauty, and blood. White symbolizes purity, good health, and the first flowers of Spring – snowdrops. Only a few Europeans celebrate Mărțișor Day: Moldova, Romania, Bulgaria, and North Macedonia. Did you know that UNESCO added mărțișor day to its Cultural Heritage of Humanity list in 2017?
What is the legend of the mărțișor?
You may have heard various versions of the mărțișor story, but this one, in particular, is different from the rest.
Once there was a Sun who took the shape of a young man. When the weather brightens, the man descends and dances with the folks during this time. A dragon soon follows the man and captures him, leaving the folks miserable. The Sun was not showing, the birds were not singing, and the folks stopped dancing.
A brave young man set out on a mission to save the Sun, with the Village supporting him in challenging the dragon. The fight lasted three seasons: Winter, Summer, and Autumn. Once, the man arrived in the dragon’s dome (where the man was held captive) and fought for several days.
It was Spring, and the folks were dancing again; however, the brave man did not make it through the fight, and his warm blood trickled on the white snow. Underneath the melting snow, there were the sprouting of snowdrops, in which the last drop of the man’s blood descended.
What is happening now?
Hospices of Hope Moldova launched the project “Mărțișor cu Magie.” Youth.md members volunteered at Hospices of Hope – Moldova spent their free time helping people in need by handcrafting mărțișoare with traditional red and white tassels – simple and sweet. The volunteers divided tasks and got the job done! The handmade charms are gifted and served as a donation to those who suffer from incurable diseases.
It is a British nonprofit/charity organization already located in four areas of the Republic of Moldova. They have collaborated for eight years, and they aim to serve palliative charity in South-Eastern Europe, especially in developing countries like Moldova. Patients deserve to live in peace without physical, emotional, or social pain. “Un Mărțișor pentru Speranță”
Moldova takes care of their traditions, and Mărțișor day indeed remains one of the most beautiful in Moldovan traditions. Let Spring be your lucky charm. If you want to make your mărțișor, click this link. Stay updated on Youth.md for more content like this!
Reporter Youth.md: Gesica Sirbu