On December 14, St. Naum will be commemorated in Orthodox churches. One of the 12 minor prophets is considered the patron of people who are engaged in mental work. In the folk calendar – Naumov’s day, Naum the Gramotnik. In Rus’, teachers were honored at this time.
On December 14 (December 1, old style), Orthodox Christians traditionally pray to St. Naum. One of the 12 minor prophets patronizes people who are associated with creativity, science, and are engaged in mental activity.
Very little is known about Saint Naum. According to the scripture, he was born in the north of Israel in the 7th century BC. He is one of the 12 minor prophets. So called the Old Testament authors who wrote books of prophecy. They were called small for a reason. The volume of works written by them was smaller than the prophecies that were created by Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel and Daniel. That was the name of the four great prophets.
The book of prophecies of Nahum was dedicated to the death of the main Assyrian city of Nineveh. Many years before its destruction, the prophet predicted what would happen to the inhabitants who lead an unrighteous lifestyle. Debauchery, idolatry, witchcraft swept over the Nineveh. Even the prophet Jonah, who predicted the end of this life, could not stop them.
When the troops of the Assyrian king Sennacherib surrounded Jerusalem, they were exterminated. Naum tried to temper the joy of the citizens of Nineveh, trying to explain that a flood awaits them ahead, which will be fatal for everyone.
What happened next was consistent with the prophecies of St. Naum. At first, Nineveh was surrounded by the troops of the Median and Babylonian kings, and then destroyed by them. When the king of Nineveh, Sardanapal, realized that it would not be possible to save, he ordered a large fire to be lit, where the royal treasures were thrown, rose up and stepped into the fire. And Nineveh was washed away by the waters of the Tigris River. So the prophecy of St. Naum came true.
Folk calendar: Naumov day
The name Naum in translation means “consolation”. People turned to the holy prophet Nahum in difficult moments of life. He was asked for help in family matters. Parents of children who had difficulty in studying hoped that the prophet would help in mastering the sciences. “Nahum will come – he will bring to mind,” they said in the old days. And they also knew: “Prophet Nahum sharpens the mind.”
On Naumov’s day, the whole family was supposed to go to church to pray to the prophet. Thus, people received a blessing to study.
What can you do on Naumov day
Naumov’s day was considered a favorable time for those who sent their children to study. It is no coincidence that the folk holiday has another name: Naum the Gramotnik. But the parents did not lead their children anywhere. On Naumov’s day, they welcomed teachers at home. Tables were laid for them with all sorts of dishes. But since Naumov’s day passes during Christmas Lentdishes were prepared without meat, fish, milk, cottage cheese and eggs.
On Naumov’s day, teachers were presented with gifts – this is the tradition. Before starting school, the child was supposed to hit with rods three times. The blows were symbolic, but, despite this, they were accompanied by a loud cry of the mother. Our ancestors believed that this ritual would help in learning. Naumov’s day was considered ideal for starting new business.
What not to do on Naumov’s day
The main prohibitions of the holiday are related to study and science. For example, on Naumov’s day, it was not allowed to leave books open so that evil spirits would not take away the main thoughts. On Naumov day it is also prohibited:
- Boast of academic success, show notebooks with grades. Boasting good will not end – study will become unbearable, and the head will be empty.
- Praise anyone for academic excellence. It was believed that this way you can jinx a successful person who, after praise, will have a hard time.
- Look into the eyes of a beggar while giving alms. The elders believed that in this way one could be in the place of the petitioner.
On Naumov’s day, it was forbidden to read books while eating. They were afraid of “jamming” academic success.
Naumov day: folk calendar
On the day of Naum the Literate, our ancestors looked at the snow. If it fell in the form of flakes, it meant that bad weather would follow. If there was frost on the trees, they knew: in summer, dew could be collected in buckets. If in the distance they heard the barking of a dog or the howl of a wolf, they understood: this is for a snowfall.
On Naumov’s name day, they celebrate: Dmitry, Naum, Porfiry. These people are considered intellectuals. They are easily given languages, oratory. Many of them follow the teacher’s path or are engaged in writing. Their works are full of prophetic thoughts, they make you think about the future.
Earlier, the online publication Uchitelskaya Gazeta talked about what needs to be done in soykin dayas well as about the traditions of the national holiday Katherine’s day. Special section UG.RU “People’s Calendar” dedicated to ancient Russian customs.