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Celebrate the arrival of spring with witches and warlocks

What better way to see out April than on a mountain top in the company of witches and warlocks.

German, April 27 (Uitv) - According to local mythology, said witches and warlocks gather on Walpurgisnacht which takes its name from Saint Walburga, whose feast day is 1 May.

"Witches' Night", is believed to be the night of a witches' meeting on the Brocken, the highest peak in the Harz Mountains, a range of wooded hills in central Germany between the rivers Weser and Elbe.

The first known written occurrence of the English translation "Walpurgis Night" is from the 19th century.

 Huge bonfires—up to 8 metres (26 ft) tall—are built and burnt in the evening, preferably on top of hills.

Young people gather around. Sudden black and dense smoke formations are cheered as "a witch flying away".

Walpurgis Night has featured in a number of films and novels including The Wicker Man and Bram Stoker's Dracula.

 

As evening advances to midnight and fire is on the wane, it is time to go search for a cherry tree in blossom.

Young women should be kissed past midnight (and during the following day) under a cherry tree. They "will not dry up" for an entire year. The First of May is celebrated then as "the day of those in love".

In Finland, Walpurgis Day (Vappu) is one of the four biggest holidays, up there with Christmas and New Year's Eve.

The festivities are based on ancient folklore according to which witches were believed to fly on their brooms to the Brocken mountain on the eve of May Day. Together with devils, they would celebrate the arrival of spring there.

 

Video Source: Youtube