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Christmas

Dzied Maroz

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Dzied Maroz (Belarusian: Дзед Мароз, Dzied Maróz, literally "Grandfather Frost") is the Belarusian analogue of Russian Ded Moroz. His official residence is located in Biełavieskaja Pušča.

Unlike in Russia, in Belarus dzied Maroz is not a traditional character and is never mentioned in national folklore. This character was introduced during Soviet times in order to replace the traditional Śviaty Mikałaj (Saint Nicholas), whom the anti-religious Soviet government considered inappropriate. Unlike Śviaty Mikałaj, who was coming on Christmas, Dzied Maroz was a New Year guest. All his habits and looks were borrowed from Russian traditions, with Belarusian ones being abandoned.

The new character was adopted by the people, although it took much longer in rural areas.

Although some people are making attempts to bring Śviaty Mikałaj back, Dzied Maroz remains to be the popular winter holiday character, mainly because most people are familiar with Soviet customs, and know almost nothing about Belarusian national traditions.

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