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Saint Basil's Cathedral
The Bird Wedding
A custom among the Sorbs of Lusatia in Germany
Today children celebrate the Birds' Wedding on January 25 of each year. This custom is closely related to the observation of the animal kingdom and the plant world. At this time various kinds of birds begin to build their nests and lay eggs. After a long hard winter people are anxious for the spring to awake and colour the earth green. The origin of the Sorbian Birds' Wedding is said to be in the area of the Upper Sorbs. Still today this custom is alive in many families. Children feed the birds in winter and as a reward the children are allowed to participate in the Birds' Wedding. They put empty plates and dishes in the open window and birds bring sweets and cookies.
This original custom is unknown among Lower Sorbs. Instead, elementary schools and kinder gartens celebrate the Bird's Wedding as children's festivity within the groups. The magpie (Sorbian "sroka") and the raven (Sorbian "wron") are bride and groom. The bridal couple is beautifully dressed. Most of the time the bride and groom wear the traditional formal wedding costume of the Sorbs. The other children dress up as various birds and are invited to enjoy the wedding meal. Throughout the day the children show what they have learned by performing dances, singing Sorbian folk songs and reading poems and short stories.
The Birds' Wedding is very popular among grownups as well.
St. Basil's Moscow
The Cathedral of Vasily the Blessed, commonly known as Saint Basil's Cathedral, is a former church in Red Square in Moscow, Russia.