Azerbaijan celebrates Wind Tuesday
By Laman Ismayilova
Today Azerbaijani people are celebrating another Tuesday ahead of Novruz spring holiday.
Known as "Windy Tuesday" among the people, it is the third of the following Tuesdays.
According to beliefs, it is the wind that awakens nature from a dream, buds burst on trees, and all living things awaken and get a boost. This is a sign of the upcoming spring.
Azerbaijani people believe that different winds sleep underground, which go out to the surface.
The four winds are Khazri (cold northern wind), Gilavar (southern wind), Agh Yel (White Wind) and Gara Yel (Black Wind), both hot, dry summer winds.
On Wind Tuesday, Azerbaijani people traditionally make bonfires in every yard and eat pilaf. "Yel baba" ("Father of Wind") ceremonies are also conducted. These ceremonies are mainly linked with the traditions of farming.
Notably, the first day of Novruz falls on the spring equinox on March 20-21. The holiday celebrates the spring arrival and marks the start of a new year.
On September 30, 2009, Novruz was included into UNESCO’s List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage. On February 23, 2010, the UN declared March 21 the International Day of Novruz.
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