Bulgarian New Year

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This is another New Year's custom, expressing young girls' eagerness to get married and enjoy a happy family life. Ladouvane is a maidens' rite performed on the day before New Year only in Western Bulgaria, the Central Balkan Range and in some regions along the Danube River.

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In the rest of the country, it is celebrated on Midsummer Day. Preparations would start early in the morning.

All lasses in the village would drop their rings, as well as oats and barley, the symbols of fertility, into a caldron full of spring water, all the rings fastened with a red thread to a bunch of perennial plants, such as ivy, crane's bill, or basil.

The cauldron was left overnight in the open, under the stars, and on New Year's Eve, following a ritual dance around it, the girls' fortunes were told.

In Bulgaria bells also ring in the new year.

A traditional Bulgarian New Year's dish banica which is a flaky cheese pie.