26.4.11

Czech Willow Branch Tradition- European Easter Markets-

In the Czech Republic there is an Easter tradition which calls on men and boys to spank (or whip) women and girls with a braided stick made out of willow branches.
These sticks, called a pomlazka, are symbolic of good luck, rebirth and freshness.
Typically the women award the men for spanking them- thus making them more fresh- with treats ranging from painted eggs, chocolate treats or shots of alcohol.
Not unlike the Halloween tradition of trick or treating, boys in the Czech Republic set off early in the morning to visit house to house with their sticks and sacks, calling on girls to spank them and receive treats.  Traditionally they must come before noon. 

One market we visited had a booth set up for children to make their own pomlazka.

Also traditional is the Easter egg which is a symbol of new life-
Most markets sold the decorated shell of the egg as they were emptied prior to painting.
Eggs that are made at home are generally hard boiled and decorated shared then eaten.







Have you heard of the willow branch tradition before?

15 comments:

dotblogg said...

that's surprising! I haven't heard of that tradition:)I hope you had a great time there!:)
hugs
Just

Sally Tharpe Rowles said...

Wow, a little strange but the branches are pretty & it is certainly interesting to learn about. I love all the photos....especially the suitcases filled with so many beautiful eggs! What a wonderful trip ... thank you for sharing it with us.

Kristin H said...

What! That is quite a shocker!!! Great post!! Now I learned something new... Thank you for spanking me...now do you want a drink????

Hannah {Culture Connoisseur} said...

I have not. My jaw is dropped. Boys spanking little girls. Men spanking women? Are these family and friends we're talking about or complete strangers?

If a man whipped me on Easter I would egg him in the FACE.

Bossy Betty said...

Who knew? Not me! Thanks for the info and for the wonderful pictures too!

Krystal said...

that is so interesting! I think I'll stay away from the whippings though. But the eggs are gorgeous - they do that in a lot of areas around here and I love them! I just remembered that I have one and didn't even put it out for easter!

Jesse said...

what an interesting tradition, my husband likes to lightly pat my bum sometimes so he'd probably love this:)

Mama Gone Green said...

New tradition for me.... sounds a little frisky for a door-to-door exchange!
When do the women get to spank the men? haha

vintch said...

i haven't heard of that before! it's funny how each culture has its own special, unique customs. thanks for sharing and i hope your easter was lovely!

la petite coquine said...

Hannah's comment made me laugh out loud-too funny! I haven't heard of this tradition, but rewarding someone for spanking you seems like some guy's idea of a great Easter!

Mo Pie, Please said...

I have not heard of this tradition but I'm pretty happy that I know about it now! How funny!

Blace said...

Never heard of it before. I wonder how it originated. Thank you for this post!

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valarie said...

The Easter eggs are exquisite. We have a broom weaving/making tradition here in appalachia. It's very much alive and well. Infact I have one in my kitchen.

Marjorie Rose said...

Never heard of this tradition before but the spanking and consequent treats seems harmlessly fun..

Love the festive Easter eggs!

Elisa said...

interesting tradition, one i've never heard of before. for my sisters and I it was the belt (My Mom would tell us if we were very bad that she would tell Dad that we had misbehaved) and when he arrived home from work, he would remove his belt and folded in two and make a snapping noise with it, that was enough to straighten us out, it worked every single time. (Dad never laid a hand on us) it was just my Mom's way of making us behave.

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