Christmas in Hungary


I’ll be doing one post a day highlighting a different country that one of YOU sent me information about. To start off this month of Christmas around the world Klaudia from Hungary shares the traditions and customs of the holidays in her country.  Thank you for adding to the magic of the season!

In Hungary Santa Clause is called Mikulas, which comes from the name Miklòs (in English Nicholas). Originally he was a priest who left presents at the door for poor families around Christmas time. Mikulàs comes on the 6th of December and brings some tiny present for the good kids. Like chocolate or a small toy. On the 5th you have to clean your shoes, but they have to be super clean, then leave them at the window and next morning you can find your presents in them.

For Christmas Eve Jèzuska -which means baby Jesus – brings  presents during the evening not during the night. Traditionally the family has dinner together. Then they call the kids out from the room where they want to stand the Christmas tree. The grandparents or other family members occupy the children until the parents finish decorating the tree and putting the presents under it. A bell is rung and that’s the cue for the kids go into the room and see the tree and open presents. All Christmas activities are on 24th and on the 25th they just spend time together.

One last tradition some regions do is Luca’s Chair on Dec.13th. This is the shortest day of the year (winter solstice) and a day believed when people need protection from witches and evil. They start to build Luca’s wooden chair, named after a young woman whose religion martyred her. The chair is to be finished by Christmas Eve and then brought to the church.  Someone is picked to stand on the chair and they say, he/she will see the witch.

Hope you found this fun and entertaining. As they say in Hungarian boldog Karácsonyt! AKA Merry Christmas!

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  • Sandie Tillotson
    Posted at 15:30h, 02 December Reply

    I look forward to hearing of other country’s traditions…I LOVE Christmas!

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