One of the accounts says that she was the daughter of a wealthy merchant Dioscor, lived in Nicomedia on the Sea of Marmara (today’s Izmit in NW Turkey) and was to be martyred in 306 for refusing to accept threats and warnings. renounce faith in the Holy Trinity. Therefore, it is often depicted against the background of a symbolic prison tower with three windows.
According to many legends Barbara, imprisoned and sentenced to death by beheading, managed to escape from the tower, but her father managed to capture her and beheaded. For this, he himself was struck by lightning shortly thereafter. His daughter, on the other hand, was to receive an assurance shortly before her death that no one who remembered her would die without the sacraments.
The cult of St. Barbara continues in many countries and environments. In iconography, she is most often depicted in a long robe with a belt on her hips, with a covered head, a crown or a cap, holding a chalice with a host, a sword or – symbolizing martyrdom – ostrich feathers. A three-window tower always appears in the background. Sometimes she is depicted with a torch, because – according to the legend – before beheading the torturers burned it with torches.
There are many legends associated with the figure of this saint. She is widely venerated as the patroness of virgins and towers, architects, bell-rowers, gisers, artillerymen, protector in fires and in good death, and above all as the patron saint of miners. They chose her as their patron because, while escaping from prison, Barbara was supposed to squeeze through a rock crevice. She is also the patron saint of sailors, architects, various construction groups, blacksmiths, stonemasons, bell-rowers, cooks, and even prisoners and raftsmen – in many cities on the Vistula River there were districts, called Rybaki, and services in her honor were held in nearby churches; in Warsaw from 1532 there was a fishing guild dedicated to her.
In the Rauris mine in the Austrian Alps, on December 4, the miners received the bread of St. Barbara made of gingerbread dough, in other mines light was lit in the tunnels to protect against sudden death during work. From the 13th century, St. Barbara is venerated especially in Switzerland, Tirol and southern Germany as one of the 14 holy helpers. Since it was felt that it was possible to address them with all kinds of concerns and to be heard, a pilgrimage church was built in the Bavarian town of Oberfranken. Fourteen Helpers.
In Italy, this holiday is the patron saint of the armed forces, mainly artillerymen and firefighters. Santa Barbara talks about the arsenal and the composition of explosives. Her painting was often exhibited in these places. Relics of St. Barbara’s are kept in Burano near Venice.
Venezuelan worshipers of the saint spend the day on December 4 dancing, singing, receiving guests at home or in a restaurant. In the villages, drums, called drums, are heard as thanksgiving for the favors received, because St. Barbara is venerated there as the protector of all those in need. She is called from the African “Queen of Chango”. At its altars and altars, also placed in homes, you can find flowers, apples and green candles in homage to her. All who consider themselves “children of Saint Barbara” ask her for success in work, love and business.
The vivid cult of the holy martyr made Emperor Justinian in the 7th century brought her relics to Constantinople, from where they were taken by the Venetians in 1204, who later handed them over to the Church of St. John the Evangelist in Torcello. Some medieval works mention that the relics of the saint were also brought to Prussia, as evidenced by the presence of the hermother of St. Barbara in the church in Czerwińsk.
In Poland, a great worshiper of the martyr was, among others st. Stanisław Kostka. There are numerous churches dedicated to her in our country. In 2009, Starachowice chose her as their patron, and in the village of Strumień, the first sanctuary of St. Barbara.
On the day the Church remembers this saint, it was forbidden to work in the Middle Ages. Since 1800, this day has been associated with special customs in Europe. In Westphalia, Bavaria and Tyrol, the custom of cutting cherry or forsythia twigs and placing them in a vase is cultivated. Branches removed on December 4 are covered with flowers during the Christmas season. Winter flowers and green buds symbolize the supernatural conception and birth of Jesus. Tradition in Lower Austria says that “Barbara’s twigs” should be “picked in the evening by going to the garden wearing only a shirt and closing your eyes so that the spell does not break.” In many places, flowering twigs are a sign of an imminent home wedding; young girls hang the boy’s name on each twig. The one whose name adorns the twig with the first bud to bloom will be chosen.
St. Barbara has always been associated with Advent. In the folk tradition, they were also treated as twigs of life, and their flowers – as heralds of abundant harvests. In the Rhineland, St. Barbara often comes to the children with St. Nicholas; the children put the cleaned shoes on the window sills, and the next day they check whether the holidays have not forgotten about them. On the other hand, where flowering Barbara twigs have no religious symbolism, they simply have a decorative function.
The branches of cherry or forsythia cut down on this sacred branch can be “awakened” by leaving them immersed in warm water overnight. Then their water is changed every three days, and at Christmas you can see beautifully flowered twigs, reminiscent of nature constantly awakening, and the martyr and helper – St. Barbara.
Creation date: Yesterday, 10:03