I was hit by the Tradition of St. Nicholas on Saint Nicholas Day (Mikuláš) in Prague unexpectedly. When walking the Charles Bridge in the evening after Dinner at around 8 pm I’ve seen things I hadn’t seen before. There was a tall St. Nicholas (Mikuláš in Czech), all dressed in white, in a Group with two others, talking to Children. Some were totally scared, especially the smaller ones, and others were interacting with him as If they know him for ages. As I later learned the also white dressed one was an Angel (Anděl in Czech) and the total dark dressed Person with devils horns represented the Devil (čert in Czech). Ther were a few on the Charles Bridge, but unfortunately, I forgot my flash at the Hotel so I couldn’t take proper pictures of them. Below the Bridge, there was a scene with a boat, fire and a Devil as well, the only thing I could capture.
These three characters represent the Tradition of St. Nicholas, celebrated on the eve of December 5th each year, on St. Nicholas Day. In Prague, there is each year a huge happening on the Old Town Square, where the Prague Christmas Market is located. Parents go there with their Children, between 5 and 8 pm, for them to receive some gifts and treats. The gifts, most of the time chocolates or little sweets, are given by the Angel if the kids were nice the past year. The naughty kids will receive some potatoes or coal instead by the Devil, but of course, this does not happen.. otherwise by Tradition the really naughty kids will be put in the Devil’s sack and taken to hell with him. But of course, this isn’t happening either. To receive the sweets and candy many kids sing a song or tell a short poem to Mikuláš, the Saint Nicholaus.
The Tradition of Mikuláš in the Czech Republic is quite similar to the Traditions on December 5th or 6th worldwide. The kids, or of course adults as well, hang their socks or small sacks somewhere in their home, or over a fireplace on December 5th, and on December 6th they will find sweets and little presents inside. These presents come from each parents or relatives.
Do you want to learn more about Traditions in the Czech Republic and how do you celebrate St. Nicholas in your Country? I’m excited for your stories in the Comment Section!