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Name Days in Hungary

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Name Days have old traditions in Hungary. Unlike in many other countries this holiday is very popular among Hungarians.
Similarly to birthdays, people like to spend this day with their friends and family. They often have parties, where guests can have cake and drink champagne, without the candles of course. Some of them even tend to prefer it to birthdays because on this day they do not have to acknowledge their aging and still get presents. Women celebrating their Name Days are often sent flowers by their male friends or even colleagues.

Dates

Name Days are easier for the relatives to remember because they are fixed and written in calendars. There are one or more days ordered to every name. For example, every László can decide whether to have his name day on the 27th of June or on the 8th of August. Traditionally, the name day following one’s birthday is celebrated.

Special dates

There are other customs related to some special dates. One example is the 20th of August, when Istváns have their name days, which is also the celebration of the Foundation of State. Another one is the 6th of December, Miklós’s Day, when Hungarian children await St. Nicholas (Santa Claus) to fill their boots with presents. A third one is Katalin’s Day, on the 25th of November when, according to folk beliefs, if the weather is mild, at Christmas it will be freezing – and vice versa. There are of course many other notable Name Days with their own long-standing traditions.

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