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Persian New Year: The symbols of the spring

Posted on 21 March 2015
Today, Iranians celebrate their Persian New Year, thus we would like to wish them a Happy New Year by telling a bit more about their nice festivity.

The name of the event in antique Persian is Nowruz, which means New Day and indicates the beginning of a new life. Not surprisingly, this festivity overlaps with the spring’s start.

The Persian New Year is a very old festivity, it derives from the Ancient Persian religion Zoroastrian and it has been celebrated for 3000 years: It is undoubtedly the biggest event of the year.

In order to get ready for the New Year, Iranians clean their homes and buy new clothes: They want to be prepared for starting a new and better life in their best spirits.

The New Year is celebrated with traditional symbols and its effect lasts form more than a day: Nowruz is celebrated for 13 days.The first day is the New Year and usually the time is spent at home with the family. In the other 11 days, people go to visit other members of the family and friends. The last day of this vacation period is spent outside, organising picnics in parks and enjoying the spring.

Persian New Year: The main event
A very important ritual is the preparation of the table “Haft Seen" with very fascinating symbols. The most important elements are so called the 7S’{photo}

Noruz . Persian new year
1. Seeb (apple)
2. Sabze (green grass, lentils or wheat, the small grass is grown in a dish and sometimes is decorate with coloured ribbons.
3. Serke (vinegar)
4. Samanoo (similar to a pudding)
5. Senjed (a sort of berry)
6. Sekke (coin)
7. Seer (garlic)

There are many other interesting elements in the event:
Golden fishes: They are bought for the occasions, in the past people used to return them in rivers, but today most people keep them.
Mirror: means Honesty
Lit candles: mean enlightenment
Book: Koran or the book of the Iranian poet Hefez; it is a custom to read some poetry to wish good things.
Decorated eggs: As in Christian countries people decorates eggs for Easter, in Iran eggs are considered a symbol of fertility, for this reason they are decorated and used as decorative items during this festivity.
Family members gather together during this day, they read and exchange presents. Usually the gifts consist of coins, money.

Nowruz, the Persian New Year, is a very interesting festivity because despite not being religious anymore, it conserves many elements of spirituality and celebrates immaterial goods. Indeed, the main themes of the festivity are tied to the love for the family, friendship, good resolutions and hopes for a better future.



 Image courtesy of www.iransara.info

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