Serenading, egg painting and seed sowing just three of the traditions to make it on to list of intangible cultural heritage

The list of intangible cultural heritage is part of an international effort to preserve traditions under the UNESCO Convention on the Protection of the Intangible Cultural Heritage. Ministry of Culture and National Heritage

Rituals and traditions based around Christmas, Easter and New Year have been added to the list of ‘intangible cultural heritage’.

The latest five additions include serenading, baking animal figures and decorating Easter eggs.

The tradition of ‘doubling in Łukowa’, a form of carolling that takes place on the second day of Christmas sees a group of young, unmarried men visit the homes of single females to serenade them in the hopes of a union the following year.

The tradition of ‘doubling in Łukowa’, a form of carolling that takes place on the second day of Christmas sees a group of young, unmarried men visit the homes of single females to serenade them in the hopes of a union the following year.Ministry of Culture and National Heritage

The men dress up in brown robes that are adorned with red and blue embroidery with small red pom-poms. On their heads the men wear black skull caps that have four red pom-poms attached. 

Wiesława Kubów, director of the Cultural Centre in Łukowa, said: “I am delighted to announce the positive decision of the Minister of Culture and National Heritage to add our tradition onto the National List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of UNESCO.

“This is the only custom so far included on this prestigious list from the Lublin Voivodeship.”

A tradition in Strzelce Opolskie involves the symbolic sowing of cereals, most typically barley or rye, in the shape of a cross or a heart.Ministry of Culture and National Heritage

The list of intangible cultural heritage is part of an international effort to preserve traditions under the UNESCO Convention on the Protection of the Intangible Cultural Heritage.

Another tradition to make it on to the list is from the Kurpiowska Forest in the heart of Poland where families bake little animal figures between Christmas and Epiphany.

The tradition long ago was to bake an animal for each member of the household, one part of the tradition that remains scared is that the bull from the previous year must be put into the fire to bake the new figures.

Opole’s method of decorating Easter eggs, which involves applying a layer, or several layers, of wax to the egg and then soaking it in a dye to create the pattern, has also made it on to the list.Krzysztof Świderski/PAP

The animal figures always form a circle around a shepherd boy to protect him.

The remaining traditions are all based around Easter and the spring.

In the village of Dąbrowa Chotomowska the traditional blessing of food at Easter, which typically happens in church, but has now moved into people’s homes has been added, as has Opole’s method of decorating Easter eggs.

Another tradition to make it on to the list is from the Kurpiowska Forest in the heart of Poland where families bake little animal figures between Christmas and Epiphany.Ministry of Culture and National Heritage

The beautiful decorative feature is achieved by applying a layer, or several layers, of wax to the egg and then soaking it in a dye to create the pattern.

The final tradition added to the list takes place both in spring and autumn in Strzelce Opolskie and involves the symbolic sowing of cereals, most typically barley or rye, in the shape of a cross or a heart.

The cross or heart is thought to help protect the family and ensure fertility of both the land and the family who sowed it.

Strzelce Opolskie’s heart sowing tradition is believed to help protect the family and ensure fertility of both the land and the family who sowed it.Ministry of Culture and National Heritage

Culture Minister Piotr Gliński said: “I would like to thank the applicants who made an effort to preserve beautiful and unique traditions for future generations.

“I hope that their entries will contribute to the promotion of intangible cultural heritage and increase the general public's awareness of the importance of tradition.