Juhannus

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Juhannus (Midsummer Day)

Saturday between June 20 and June 26
Juhannus is a celebration in Finland of the Summer Solstice and of the feast of St. John. Like a medieval holiday, people celebrate at the lake shores where they build bonfires and dance all night. Since this is near the longest day of the year, special late performances are held at open-air theaters in many towns. There are also dances at hotels.
Many customs are remnants of pagan times. In earlier times, the bonfire was supposed to reveal the future. Birch tree branches are brought into the homes to insure future happiness. Even buses and office buildings are adorned with birch branches. On the Aland Islands, tall poles are decorated with flowers and leaves, and supper tables are decorated with birch and garlands of flowers. The church made the festival St. John's Day, but the celebration has more pagan overtones than Christian ones.
As Finland's Flag Day, Juhannus is also a national holiday.
CONTACTS:
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland
Department for Communication and Culture
P.O. Box 176
Helsinki, 00161 Finland
358-9-1600-5; fax: 358-9-1605-5901
www.virtual.finland.fi
SOURCES:
FolkWrldHol-1999, p. 392
References in classic literature ?
Even if he went to London at midsummer, what would that mean except that he was a fool?
On this occasion, the feast was especially plentiful and expensive, in commemoration not only of the arrival of the Midsummer holidays, but of the coming freedom of Miss Ladd's two leading young ladies.
The intervals of silence grew longer and longer, the voice fainter and farther, and by midsummer it was heard no more.
One dark night in midsummer a man waking from a dreamless sleep in a forest lifted his head from the earth, and staring a few moments into the blackness, said: "Catherine Larue.
But the fir-wood behind the little house was forever green and staunch; and even in November and December there came gracious days of sunshine and purple hazes, when the harbor danced and sparkled as blithely as in midsummer, and the gulf was so softly blue and tender that the storm and the wild wind seemed only things of a long-past dream.
One day in midsummer, when I was hoeing, a man who was carrying a load of pottery to market stopped his horse against my field and inquired concerning Wyman the younger.
He wore a greatcoat in midsummer, being affected with the trembling delirium, and his face was the color of carmine.
That, pending the arrival of this period, an income of six hundred pounds was to be paid to him by his two Trustees, half-yearly--at Christmas and Midsummer Day.
After addressing, in the midsummer of the following year, an appeal to the commiseration of the National Assembly of France, which the English minister refused to sanction, he composed himself to undergo his full term of punishment; and suffering his beard to grow nearly to his waist, and conforming in all respects to the ceremonies of his new religion, he applied himself to the study of history, and occasionally to the art of painting, in which, in his younger days, he had shown some skill.
I mean to put him to a downright good school at Midsummer.
But if in Donnellan's and particularly Ormerod's case the precedent seemed to be Peter Brook's celebrated Midsummer Night's Dream of 1970, in Quinton's it's the mad urge to put on a show, to make art with whatever is available, to raid the attic for props and Woolworth's and sisters' closets for costumes, to make do.
The opening night of Midsummer Night Swing, New York's favorite outdoor dance series on Josie Robertson Plaza, marks the launch of free wireless internet access across 6.