Every year, Egyptians celebrate the Spring Festival or as in Arabic “Sham Al Naseem”, which is considered an official holiday across Egypt. All Egyptians, Muslims and Christians, share the celebration of this feast. It always comes on Monday, immediately after Easter Sunday. The origin of this celebration dates back to the Pharaonic era specifically in the late Pharaonic Dynasty in 2700 BC, who initiated the celebration. The easter has been celebrated for nearly five thousand years, so it is one of the oldest holidays in history.
The Pharaohs believed that this day is the day of the beginning of creation. Easter was initially called the “feast of Shamosh” which means “the resurrection of life”, and the name has been changed throughout history, where it became “sniff” in the Coptic era, as it is linked to moderate air and spring. The word “breeze” was added later for easter to become the “feast of the breeze” or the Spring Festival.
The Egyptians have special rituals to celebrate this popular folklore, where people go out to parks packing special easter food for this day, such as salted fish, green onions, eggs, lettuce and green chickpeas. These foods were associated with the celebration of the pharaohs. And each food represents something in the Pharaonic beliefs concerning life and resurrection.
Eggs, for example, represents the creation of life from idleness. The ancient Egyptians used to engrave some prayers and wishes for the new year and placed it in baskets of palm fronds, which can be put on the balconies or tree branches to receive the blessings of the light of God at the dawn in order for these aspirations and dreams to be realized and come true.
This habit has evolved into a basic ritual of celebrating the feast, where parents accompany their children to the gardens carrying eggs to color them and draw different shapes on them. As for fish in general, they symbolize the Nile, and there is a belief that “Fisikh”, a type of fermented and salted mullet fish, symbolizes the fertility of the Pharaohs so they buried their dead accompanied by this fish, after the conservation and drying of the body, so that the dead can find something to eat when they come back to life.
The green onion was considered by ancient Egyptians as a tool to abolish magic and expel evil spirits. As for lettuce, it was one of the sacred plants used in the extraction of serums and medicines.
Not only did the Egyptians eat and color the eggs for this special occasion, but also easter is usually a day for various theater performances and shows to celebrate the Spring Festival. It became an opportunity for everyone to breathe and enjoy an amazing pleasant atmosphere.
Spring, Festival, Celebrate, Ancient Egypt, Egg, Fish, Seafood, Fisikh, Colored eggs, Parks, Garden, Weather, Pharaonic, Folklore, Coptic, Egyptian
The Spring festival was called:
- Easter Holiday
- Shamosh feast
- Al Fitr feast