Kiigepüha (the Spring is Finally Here)!

Ostara illustration Inkscape

Kiigepüha (Estonian word, literally meaning “Swing Holiday) or munapüha (“Egg Holiday”) is a festival for Estonian native faith maausk (“earth faith”) which timing overlaps with the time of the Easter. Kiigepüha celebrates the beginning of spring. And therefore my unfinished drawing is trying to feature the Spring growing plants.

Like other holidays and festivals, Kiigepüha also has many traditions and symbols. Many of them are common with other European people.

Thursday before Kiigepüha is the day for the great spring cleaning. But don’t worry if you can’t do it in Thursday (if you must work, for example), then the Saturday is also suitable for that.

In Saturday it’s time to boil eggs and prepare a feast. You should also go to sauna to cleanse your body and soul.

Sunday is the day of magic. You should wake early, before sunrise and go to swinging. In the old days, people gathered to swing and sing together (in Estonia we have these large wooden village swings that you can see in the pictures below). It was believed, that swinging cleans your body and brings you good luck. Therefore, in some places even sick people were taken to swinging. In Sunday it is forbidden to work and clean rooms.

Symbols of Kiigepüha are of course egg and bunny. With colouring the eggs you celebrate the rebirth of nature. The egg is an ancient symbol of fertility, birth and life and the rabbit also represent the fertility.

Happy Spring everyone! 🙂

I’ve used photos of these websites: