Andrzejki: Crazy Polish Love Superstitions for Women

AndrzejkiShe loves me, she loves me not; she loves me, she loves me not…Even in today’s digital age, superstitions abound when it comes to finding love.

A quick Google search will yield many of them. One says that girls who don’t  shave their legs will more quickly find a mate (disregard this one, ladies). Another superstition  claims that if you swallow a chicken’s heart whole, you can marry anyone you want (no, I have no freaking clue what the connection is).

These myths and superstitions about finding love exist in every culture and are nothing new. Poland certainly has no shortage of them, although many have, thankfully, fallen out of practice.

The last week of November, known as “Andrzejki,” was a big deal in old Poland when young Polish women would do a ton of strange things to find out about their future love lives.

Mirror Mirror on the Wall

mirror mirrorOn November 29, a Polish maiden would place two mirrors in front of her face in a darkened room. In between the mirrors, she would place a candle. The girl would then stare deeply at the lighted candle while counting backwards from 24. While staring, she had to concentrate on seeing her future husband. After reaching zero, she would turn to the darkest corner and supposedly see her future husband in the shadows. Creepy factor: 10.

It reminds me of one of these optical illusions.

Release the Hounds

Hungry-DogA bunch of Polish girls would get together and bake loaf cakes. Each girl would pick a cake and mark it, identifying it as her own. After placing the cakes on a bench, they would release a starving dog. Whichever cake the dog grabbed first, that girl would be the first to marry. Honestly, I feel sorry for the poor dog who had to starve just to boost some chick’s ego.

The Goose Knows Best

angry goose

Polish Matchmaker

Once again, an innocent animal became a fortune-telling tool for a bunch of single Polish chicks. The girls would blindfold a goose. They would then stand in a closed circle, holding hands. After setting the blindfolded animal free, they would wait in earnest to see which girl it would approach first—that girl would be the first to marry. They must have been really desperate to let a goose decide their love lives.

Choose Wisely

An older woman would place three items under three plates on a table: a leaf from the rue plant, a piece of lace, and a special hat called a “czepek.” Three young women would then enter the kitchen and pick a plate:

Picking the plate with the hat underneath meant you would be married soon.

Picking the plate with the lace underneath meant you would become a nun.

Picking the plate with the rue plant underneath meant eternal spinsterhood.

Weird stuff. I know. The guys did stuff like this from time to time too, but nothing as strange as what I described above. But who knows, maybe it worked. So ladies, maybe try one of these crazy superstitions this week. Just please make sure no animals are harmed in the process!

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2 thoughts on “Andrzejki: Crazy Polish Love Superstitions for Women

  1. Hi Crazy Polish Guy,

    I have never heard of these traditions mentioned for Andzejki or Ostatki. Maybe it varies by region. The more common ones I’m. Aware of are the fortune telling using melted candle wax and letting it drip into a bowl of water. Then the wax figure is held by the light of a candle and creates a shadow on the wall and the figure is moved around and your fortune is told to you. In some places the wax is dripped through the hole of a skeleton key as well.
    Then there is the one where all the girls take one of their shoes off and go from one extreme of a room or the full space to the closest door putting one shoe in front of the other and the shoe that reachrs the door first is the girl who will get married first of the girls there.
    Then the one where you peel an apple and it has to be one single peel. You then take the peel and throw it up in the air so it lands behind your back and the peel falls to form a letter and that is to be the initial of your future husband.
    All these are safe and no animals involved.

    I really enjoyed your article on why Polish women are the best on Earth. Well written just dissapointed there was no mention of the Polish-Canadians, or maybe you’re saving that for an article all of its own!
    Thank you for your page, I just discovered it after reading that article & am now a fan.
    Pozdrowiena
    Terenia

    Like

    • Thank you, Teresa! I actually didn’t hear about the wax tradition when I wrote this, but now several people have told me about it.

      I would love to write something geared toward Polish-Canadians. More and more are reading my blog, and I want to learn about them. I welcome any suggestions! 🙂

      Like

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