This article was planned to be posted on Sunday, as every week, but well, the flu got me! So excuse the delay, and I hope you’ll get to know more about Lucia dagen and why/how it is celebrated here in Sweden.
To be very transparent, I never really heard of Lucia Day before moving to Sweden, and looking at it today, I could have been doing a better job at searching a bit about tradition in Sweden before actually moving here. So if you know nothing about it, don’t worry, it’s all good, it’s never too late to learn new things!
So Lucia day is on the 13th of December, and it is actually not a holiday! It is for sure a celebration day, and so be prepared to have some of the amazing “lussekatter” (aka. yummy saffron bun) in your office.
Some facts and history about this day!
Historically, Lucia was a mythological figure which was bringing lights into the long Swedish winter and its famous darkness. The first traces of this traditions are taking us back all the way till year 304, and with time this tradition evolved, until 1764, when the first apparition of the Lucia in a white house was recorded. On the other hand, the serving of coffee and lussekatter for this day comes from the 1880’s! (src: Sweden.se)
Nowadays, the Lucia is a young lady, dressed in white and wearing a crown of candles on her head. The person being Lucia, is elected/chosen in her community to be the lady of the day. On the other hand, boys are also dressed in white and are carrying candles or lantern around Lucia.
What you can do to celebrate it?
Usually there are a lot of choirs in town! In every district, in every city, this tradition is really spread on a national level, and everywhere it is something to attend. Usually the cities share publicly the events and other happenings, but if you are not sure, the choirs would have a show in a large public place or in churches. Lucia celebrations often come with coffee or mulled wine and saffron flavored buns.
If you haven’t been there yet or havent experienced it yet, you should for sure go next year! And it is not too late to try the saffron buns! Though seasonal, you still have a few days to get them!