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Superstitions about chimney sweepers and snake in Polish gardens


SeanBM 35 | 5,808  
29 Jul 2008 /  #1
I have many questions about Poland.

1. Chimney sweepers wear black and you are supposed to hold your button if you see them, why?

2. I saw a snake in my garden yesterday, are there any poisonous ones and which are most common?, (for a lot of you this might be normal for me it is something to write home about, as there are no snakes in Ireland).

I have drawn a blank but I will post more questions when I think of them and please feel free to post your own questions
miranda  
29 Jul 2008 /  #2
1. Chimney sweepers wear black and you are supposed to hold your button if you see them, why?

good luck

I saw a snake in my garden yesterday, are there any poisonous ones and which are most common?, (for a lot of you this might be normal for me it is something to write home about, as there are no snakes in Ireland).

some are, but a few and mostly inhabit Bieszczady region.

Oops wrong: apparently there are some all over in the woods in Poland : crossed vipers (żmija zygzakowata)and their are poisonous. You better check if what you saw was a garden snake: zaskroniec or a viper, for which you need a......serum injection if bitten.
bramkaz 1 | 24  
29 Jul 2008 /  #3
Vipers are not common, so no bother it was a grass snake.
OP SeanBM 35 | 5,808  
29 Jul 2008 /  #4
good luck

ha ha ha, ok is there anything else you can tell me about chimney sweepers that adds to this?

for which you need a......serum injection.

It didn't bite me or anything, I also thought I saw a lizard yesterday, is that possible? I did not catch a good look at it but the way it ran was like a newt.

3. There are lakes near Krakow with sandy beaches, was this whole area covered in water hundreds and thousands of years ago? also there is a dessert in Poland, WTF?



That is my first time using WTF, does it mean "what the feck?"?


The snake was brown in colour but i did not see it's head
miranda  
29 Jul 2008 /  #5
ha ha ha, ok is there anything else you can tell me about chimney sweepers that adds to this?

sorry, what I meant was: it brings good luck;)
tornado2007 11 | 2,274  
29 Jul 2008 /  #6
why are the Polish, Polish??
bramkaz 1 | 24  
29 Jul 2008 /  #7
wrzuta.pl/slideshow/dir/43te4sTYUx

There is big probability that you saw a lizard

if you see a chimney sweeper you know that your chimney is ok so your home will be warm in winter and you will get hot meal. He is a household ranger. So it is a custom that is believed to bring good luck and the button is just an amulet
OP SeanBM 35 | 5,808  
29 Jul 2008 /  #8
why are the Polish, Polish??

That is a good question, Poland has been attacked many times by many different peoples from all round the world and still they are Polish, you could write a book on that, I am sure.

There is big probability that you saw a lizard

Wow, they are really beautiful, did you take those photos?


4. I was told when I brought a bottle of vodka to a party that I had to drink first, my friend said (maybe) jokingly that it is a tradition in case it is poisoned, is there a story about that from the time of your Kings? Also you drink a shot and fill it for the next person, anything in that?



I know some questions are going to be silly but that is the nature of not knowing. I also know I could google all this stuff but I am a people person....on a computer too
VaFunkoolo 6 | 654  
29 Jul 2008 /  #9
Ive been told never take a light from a candle, something to do with sailors at sea

Any further explanation?
tornado2007 11 | 2,274  
29 Jul 2008 /  #10
That is a good question, Poland has been attacked many times.

ok so the new name for Poland is just 'Land' so now you are all Landish instead of Polish :)
OP SeanBM 35 | 5,808  
29 Jul 2008 /  #11
ok so the new name for Poland is just 'Land'

But Poland has moved several times, so land would not be the exact thing, would it?
You are probably taking the mickey but you still come up with questionable things.
tornado2007 11 | 2,274  
29 Jul 2008 /  #12
But Poland has moved several times, so land would not be the exact thing, would it?

i guess not, maybe the people of the 'unamed' land could vote for a name :)
miranda  
29 Jul 2008 /  #13
something to do with sailors at sea

they say that every time you do it one seaman dies;)
telefonitika  
29 Jul 2008 /  #14
That is my first time using WTF, does it mean "what the feck?"?

yes it does: webopedia.com/quick_ref/textmessageabbreviations.asp

can find more at that link
OP SeanBM 35 | 5,808  
29 Jul 2008 /  #15
5. Are there fairies, trolls, sprites etc in Poland?

6. What were the major religions before Christianity here?
OP SeanBM 35 | 5,808  
29 Jul 2008 /  #17
Thank you bramkaz, you are most helpful.
I especially liked the snake pictures
OP SeanBM 35 | 5,808  
31 Jul 2008 /  #19
6) In Poland it is bad luck, or something, to shake someone's hand through a doorway.
Why?

Somebody changed the title of this thread....
Now it would not make sence if I were to just ask random questions about Poland.
sausage 19 | 777  
31 Jul 2008 /  #20
it is bad luck, or something, to shake someone's hand through a doorway

and kissing in a doorway too apparently
OP SeanBM 35 | 5,808  
31 Jul 2008 /  #21
Hi sausage,
I didn't know about that one, maybe it is in case the door slams shut? No I do not know, just a shot in the dark.
sausage 19 | 777  
31 Jul 2008 /  #22
maybe it is in case the door slams shut?

I was told this after kissing in an interior doorway... unlikely to slam shut...
Svenski 1 | 159  
31 Jul 2008 /  #23
I thought I heard something once about what one's supposed to do when you see a nun or nuns?
OP SeanBM 35 | 5,808  
31 Jul 2008 /  #24
Bless yourself? or bow your head?
Svenski 1 | 159  
31 Jul 2008 /  #25
maybe.. i heard this from someone in Poland a few years ago but it escapes my mind now...could be something the older generation knows about.
Krzysztof 2 | 973  
31 Jul 2008 /  #26
to shake someone's hand through a doorway

doorway as a threshold symbolizes a division (outside-inside, room-corridor), so the popular belief is that greeting someone in a doorway will divide these 2 persons and they'll simply have a fight (quarrel). Unfottunatelly, I don't know how it all started (as most superstitions have their roots in a remote time)
OP SeanBM 35 | 5,808  
31 Jul 2008 /  #27
Thank you Krzysztof, I do not expect a clear explanation for the superstitions thank you for your comment.


I read on another post somewhere that you can walk along the coast and pick up Amber, how likely is this? what is the best time to go, summer/spring, I would imagine tide out.

Has anyone actually gotten amber this way?
ShelleyS 14 | 2,893  
1 Aug 2008 /  #28
Ive been told never take a light from a candle, something to do with sailors at sea

Light houses used to use candles to worn of rocks. Some lighthouse keeper accidentally put the candle out trying to light a smoke, and a ship crash into the rocks as a result.

or

Fishing boats used to carry water tight lanterns so they could see each other through the winter darkness. If a light went out it meant the North Atlantic had claimed another boat and more lives. So it came to be that the flame of a candle represented a spirit. To light a cigarette off a candle is not only disrespectful to the sailor that died, but steals some of his spirit away.
VaFunkoolo 6 | 654  
1 Aug 2008 /  #29
I read on another post somewhere that you can walk along the coast and pick up Amber, how likely is this?

Very unlikely in most places nowadays it seems although I believe there is an annual amber collection festival still. How much is actually collected I cant tell you but would have thought not very much

ShelleyS

Thanks for the answers - makes sense
Zgubiony 15 | 1,554  
1 Aug 2008 /  #30
Has anyone actually gotten amber this way?

Yes, I've found amber walking along the beach in Chłopy. I've heard the cold months are better, but I don't know how truthful that is. Also, don't be fooled by sea glass. There's a test that you can do to see if it's real amber. It holds friction, so if you rub it briskly on a cotton cloth and tear off a tiny corner of paper, it'll pick it up.

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