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Today is DIMITROVDEN (St. Demetrius’s Day)

Name day of everyone named Dimiter, Dimitrina, Dimo, Mitra, Dragan, Drago, Dimka. 

According to traditional concepts, that day (called Dimitrovden or Mitrovden) marks the beginning of winter. “St George (celebrated on May 6th) brings summer, St Demetrius (October 26th) brings winter”. It is believed that St Demetrius rides a red horse and the first snowflakes fall off his beard. First snow is expected shortly after the feast. According to the tradition, this day marks the end of the period for which seasonal workers - shepherds, cattle herds and farm hands have been hired. In Bulgaria the day honoring St. Demetrius is (Dimiter is the BG version of Demetrius).

That day, the summer-time hired workers or servants, whose guardian St. Dimiter was, are either freed by their masters or are priced to work for a whole year, usually until Gergiovden next year (May 6). Once priced, the servants could not leave their masters under any circumstances. In the past it was said that that was the day when “some got enslaved while others were free to go”.

As a forerunner of winter, in popular beliefs St Demetrius is associated with the netherworld – the world of the dead and of the forefathers. The so-called “Dimitrovska Zadushnitsa” (All Souls’ Day) is on the Saturday preceding the St Demetrius’ Day.