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Happy Tapaninpäivä!

3 Comments

Reblogged from last year

Photo by smerikal

St. Stephen is known as the first Christian martyr and the patron saint of horses. In northern countries the December 26th has been celebrated as the day of horses and horsemen. In Finland it was a custom of men to feast in the stable, to gain good luck with horses for the next year. The feast honoured Talli-Tapani (“Stable-Stephen”), the lord of horses. This is how St. Stefanos was fit to Finnish folk culture. A crucial part of the Tapani celebration was to have a leisure drive with the horses, which often included racing through the village. This served also as an opportunity to visit the relatives and neighbours.

Nowadays the Tapani celebration is not as big as it used to, but the horse people still honour their horses this day (even more than usual) and it is still common to go for a Tapani drive (with a sleigh if possible) or ride, and of course, if possible, with a flaxen-mained finnhorse at best.

Saint Stephen (en.wikipedia.org)

Tapaninpäivä (fi.wikipedia.org)

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Author: Viivi

I'm Finnish media student and finnhorse enthusiast. I started my blog "National Treasure" in 2009. I'm aiming to provide information about this multipurpose horse breed in English, in all its variety -as a historical and cultural figure, modern sport horse, friend and a companion. The blog is my tribute for the national horse of Finland.

3 thoughts on “Happy Tapaninpäivä!

  1. Tanja and Uuras made it to national news (two clips):
    http://areena.yle.fi/tv/1780959 and http://areena.yle.fi/tv/1780831

    Like

  2. I did not know Saint Stephen was the patron of horses! Happy holidays to you and your beloved ones! :)

    Like

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