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Alice R.
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“Sanzeienele (pronounced ”soon-see-ehn-eh”) is a solar celebration, dedicatd to fire by the lit torches young men ritually rotate in the direction of the sun’s journey in the sky. It takes place on the 24th of Iune and it’s also called Dragaica, The Day of the Sun, or The Voiceless Cuckoo, because starting with this day untill the winter equinox of the next year, this oracular bird will not be heard singing anymore. The Sanziene are fairies, they are flowers, girl-flowers, anthropo-vegetable states of the most beloved mytho-folkloric characters. They are called in some places Dragaice, derived from the slavonic word “draga” (meaning beautiful, darling), but in most parts of Romania they’re named Sanziene. The renowed writer Mircea Eliade thought that their origins are from a roman cult dedicated to the goddess Diana (Sanctae Dianae), worshiped just the same in Dacia (n.a. ancient pre-Romanian civilisation).“ Iulia Gorneanu Dragaica would walk the earth or float in mid air in the day of the summer solstice and she would delight herself with songs and dance along her nuptial procession made of beautiful maiden fairies, over fields and woods. In southern Muntenia organised Dragaica bands that wander around the village, the girl who plays Dragaica is dressed as a bride in a shimmering white gown wearing a crown of Sanziene (Dragaica) flowers, remeniscing the wedding procession.
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