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Nestinar Feast in the Village of Stomanovo, the Smolyan Region
International Journal of Literature and Arts
Volume 5, Issue 5-1, October 2017, Pages: 37-47
Received: Aug. 25, 2017; Accepted: Aug. 26, 2017; Published: Aug. 31, 2017
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Krasimira Georgieva Fileva-Ruseva, Department of Piano and Accordion, Faculty of Musical Education, Academy of Music, Dance and Fine Arts, Plovdiv, Bulgaria
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The nestinar (fire-dancer) rituals, involving dances on embers, were practiced by the ancient Thracians. Today, they have been preserved in several Bulgarian villages in south-eastern Strandzha Mountain, as well as in the village of Stomanovo, the Rhodope Mountains, Southwestern Bulgaria. Such rituals are performed also in several villages in Northern Greece, where they have been carried over by migrants from Strandzha. While in the villages in Strandzha and in Northern Greece, Christian traditions have been overlaid on the ancient pagan ritual - the faith and devotion to Sv. Sv. Konstantin and Elena, for the inhabitants of Stomanovo (whose ritual I will describe in the present exposition), the ritual has not be Christianized - for them, it has remained a pagan Thracian Orphic tradition (well, the legendary Thracian singer and healer, Orpheus, creator of the "Orphism" belief system, lived in the Rhodope Mountains), an expression of the cult to the Great Goddess-Mother, her son Sabazios (Sun-Fire), Zagrey (the Bull God) and, as the people of Stomanovo described it themselves - a celebration of life, of fertility.
Fire-Dancer, Dance on Embers, Pagan Feast, Sacrifice, Stomanovo
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Krasimira Georgieva Fileva-Ruseva, Nestinar Feast in the Village of Stomanovo, the Smolyan Region, International Journal of Literature and Arts. Special Issue: Music and Dance. Vol. 5, No. 5-1, 2017, pp. 37-47. doi: 10.11648/j.ijla.s.2017050501.15
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