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FOLK CURE AND REMEDY

A SURE CURE FOR WARTS INVOLVES THE USE OF LEAVES FROM A WEEPING
WILLOW TREE. THE INFLICTED PERSON RUBS THE LEAVES OVER THE WART IN
THE SIGN OF THE CROSS. THEN THEY BURY THEM.

Submitter comment: THE INFORMANT FIRST HEARD THIS REMEDY AROUND THE YEAR 1910 IN
POLAND. IT IS A PLUGGING CURE IN WHICH THE OBJECT USED TO CURE
THE WARTS IS BURIED IN THE GROUND. A HIGH DEGREE OF BELIEF WAS
PORTRAYED WHEN SHE DISPLAYED HER HANDS TO THE COLLECTOR. WHERE
THERE USED TO BE WARTS, THERE WERE NONE PRESENT. THE INFORMANT
DID NOT INDICATE WHETHER A TRANSFER OCCURRED FROM THE HAND TO THE
LEAF.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): TRANSFER

Subject headings: Favorites
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
BELIEF -- Plant
BELIEF -- Method of Curing

Date learned: 10-00-1980

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GREEK BAPTISM

WHEN A GREEK CHILD IS BAPTISED AS AN INFANT, HE IS GIVEN A SAINT'S
NAME. THE GODFATHER HAS A WHITE BLANKET WHICH HE PLACES THE BABY IN.
THE PRIEST ANOINTS THE CHILD'S FOREHEAD, PALMS, AND FEET. HE IS THEN
CLOTHED IN BRAND NEW CLOTHES WHICH SYMBOLIZES HIS STARTING A NEW LIFE
WITH A CROSS PLACED AROUND HIS NECK.

Submitter comment: THE GREEKS' WAY OF A BAPTISM IS SIMILAR TO THE CATHOLIC ONE, WITH A
SLIGHT VARIATION.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: 686 Properties attributed to specific numbers or numerals individually.
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Birth
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
BELIEF -- Color

Date learned: 00-00-1980

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GREEK WEDDING CUSTOMS

THE GREEK CUSTOMS DO NOT FAVOR ANY PARTICULAR MONTH FOR WEDDINGS. THE
CHURCH DOESN'T PERMIT MARRIAGES DURING THE LENTEN PERIODS. DURING A
GREEK WEDDING CEREMONY THERE ARE TWO WREATHS OF ORANGE BLOSSOMS
CONNECTED WITH A SATIN RIBBON. THE PRIEST CROSSES THE RIBBON THREE
TIMES WHICH SIGNIFIES THAT THE MARRIAGE CAN'T BE BROKEN UNTIL DEATH.
THE BRIDE HAS A DOWRY WHICH THE BRIDE'S FAMILY GIVES MONEY TO THE
GROOM.
THE TRADITIONAL GREEK WEDDING MEAL CONSISTS OF CORDIAL, MELON BALLS,
GREEN BEANS, GREEK SUMMER SALAD, ROLLS AND COFFEE.

Submitter comment: THE GREEK WEDDINGS ARE JOYOUS ONES FILLED WITH A LOT OF CELEBRATING.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: 686 Thirds / Thrice / Three / Triple
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Marriage
Food Drink -- Typical menus for the various meals For meal hours, see F574.84. Special or festive meals
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications

Date learned: 00-00-1980

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CROSS BREAD BEFORE YOU CUT IT, THUS YOU WILL ALWAYS HAVE
FOOD.

Submitter comment: FROM FRIENDS.

Where learned: NEIGHBORS

James Callow Keyword(s): SIGN OF THE CROSS?

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Home
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications

Date learned: 10-22-1967

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VAMPIRE

THE ONLY WAY TO SCARE A VAMPIRE OFF AT NIGHT IS TO MAKE SIGN OF THE
CROSS.

Data entry tech comment: THERE ARE MANY STORIES LIKE THIS ONE ON ORIGINAL 5X8 CARDS.

Where learned: HOME

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Werewolf Vampire
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
SPEECH -- Gesture

Date learned: 11-29-1967

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RELIGIOUS GESTURE

A RELIGIOUS CUSTOM IN MY FAMILY IS THAT MEN TIP THEIR HAT AND
WOMEN MAKE THE SIGN OF THE CROSS WHEN PASSING BY A CHURCH.

Submitter comment: FREQUENTLY PRACTICED

Where learned: DETROIT

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Church
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
SPEECH -- Gesture

Date learned: 00001930S

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IF YOU CROSS THE BATS IN THE DUGOUT, IT MEANS SOMEONE WILL
GET HURT.

Submitter comment: CROSSING THE BATS MEANS CRISS-CROSSING EITHER THE HANDLES
OR THE BARRELS OF THE BATS (NOT PASSING IN FRONT OF THEM).

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ROYAL OAK

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Entertainment Diversion
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
BELIEF -- Means of Causing or Avoiding Illness
BELIEF -- Bad luck Games Pastimes Sports

Date learned: 00001970S

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BODY PART BELIEFS

IF A PART OF YOUR BODY GOES TO "SLEEP", LICKING YOUR FINGER
AND DRAWING AN "X" ON THE PART WILL MAKE IT GO AWAY.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ROYAL OAK

Subject headings: Favorites
BELIEF -- Body part Senses
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
BELIEF -- Remedy
BELIEF -- Method of Curing
SPEECH -- Gesture

Date learned: 00001970S

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WHEN THE OPPOSITE SEX COMES NEAR YOU, CROSS THE FIRST TWO FINGERS
OF YOUR RIGHT HAND AND PLACE THEM ON THE BACK OF YOUR LEFT HAND.
THIS PROTECTS YOU FROM "COOTIES".

Submitter comment: THIS IS FOR GRADE SCHOOL CHILDREN, WHO ARE CONVINCED THAT THE
OPPOSITE SEX CARRIES SOME SORT OF INFECTIOUS GERM (COOTIES).

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ROYAL OAK

Subject headings: Favorites
BELIEF -- Body part Senses
BELIEF -- Street Trip Relations between relatives, friends, host and guest Social class Rank
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
BELIEF -- Means of Causing or Avoiding Illness

Date learned: 00001960S

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EVIL EYE

REMEDY FOR A SEVERE MIGRAINE HEADACHE. TAKE A BOWL OF WATER, MAKE
THE SIGN OF THE CROSS OVER THE BOWL THREE TIMES. THEN, TAKE A TINY
BIT OF OIL ON A TEASPOON AND DIP FINGER TIP IN OIL. HOLD OVER BOWL
UNTIL THREE DROPLETS OF OIL DROP INTO THE WATER. IF THE DROPLETS OF
OIL SPREAD SOMEONE HAS GIVEN YOU THE "EVIL EYE". CHANGE WATER AND
REPEAT PROCESS UNTIL DROPLETS DO NOT OPEN UP OR SPREAD, AT THIS
POINT HEADACHE WILL GO AWAY. IF IT DOES NOT SPREAD OPEN NO ONE HAS
GIVEN YOU THE "EVIL EYE".
CUSTOM WITHIN SICILIAN NATIONALITY MAY BE CONSIDERED A SUPERSTITION.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: 686 Thirds / Thrice / Three / Triple
BELIEF -- Curse
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
BELIEF -- Method of Curing

Date learned: 10-00-1982

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SIGN OF THE CROSS

MANY UKRAINIAN WOMEN OFTEN USE THE SIGN OF THE CROSS IN
CONNECTION WITH FOOD. THEY MAKE THE SIGN OVER THE LOAVES
OF BREAD BEFORE PUTTING THEM INTO THE OVEN FOR BAKING.
MANY WOMEN ALSO MAKE THE SIGN ON THE BOTTOM OF A LOAF OF
BREAD BEFORE BEGINNING TO SLICE IT. THE UKRAINIANS DEPENDED
ON BREAD AS A MAIN PART OF THEIR DAILY FOOD. SINCE UKRAINE
WAS THE BREADBASKET OF EUROPE, THEIR GRATITUDE AND THEIR
ACCEPTANCE OF THIS PLENTY WAS EXPRESSED THROUGH THIS SIMPLE
RELIGIOUS GESTURE OF ACKNOWLEDGING THE UNIVERSAL PROVIDER.

Submitter comment: I HAVE NEVER SEEN MY MOTHER SLICE A LOAF OF BREAD WITHOUT
MAKING A SIGN OF THE CROSS OVER THE BOTTOM OF THE LOAF.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; ROCHESTER

Subject headings: Favorites
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
SPEECH -- Gesture
SPEECH -- Religious

Date learned: 00001950S

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EPIPHANY-JANUARY 6

FOR UKRAINIANS VARIOUS EVENTS ARE COMMEMORATED ON THIS
DAY WHICH IS ALSO CALLED "THEOPHANY" OR MANIFESTATION. IT
CELEBRATES THE BAPTISM OF CHRIST AND THEREFORE WATER IS
BLESSED IN THE CHURCHES. THE BLESSING FOLLOWS THE MASS
WHEN THE PRIEST SUBMERGES THREE SETS OF THREE LIGHTED
CANDLES. A CRUCIFIX IS ALSO MOVED THROUGH THE WATER IN
THE FORM OF A CROSS. THE PEOPLE FILL THEIR JARS WITH HOLY
WATER TO BRING HOME. EACH PERSON DRINKS SOME HOLY WATER
AND SOME IS POURED INTO THE HOLY WATER FONTS. IN THE WEEKS
FOLLOWING EPIPHANY, THE PASTOR VISITS THE HOMES OF HIS
PARISHONERS TO BLESS THEM. THE HOLY WATER IS ALSO USED FOR
BLESSING FARMS, CATTLE, AND CROPS. ON SPECIAL FEAST DAYS,
THE CHURCH ALSO BLESSES FRUIT, FLOWERS, AND FOOD. IT IS ALSO
USED IN THE ADMINISTRATION OF THE SACRAMENTS.

Submitter comment: TO UKRAINIANS ALL BODIES OF WATER SUCH AS LAKES, RIVERS,AND
PONDS WERE CONSIDERED HOLY. THE BLESSING OF WATER IN THE
UKRAINE TOOK PLACE AT THE EDGE OF THE RIVER NOT IN THE
PARISH CHURCH.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; ROCHESTER

Keyword(s): THREE

Subject headings: 686 Thirds / Thrice / Three / Triple
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 6 Twelfth Day Epiphany
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Church
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Typical Elements of a Festive Pattern
BELIEF -- Water
BELIEF -- Magic Book
BELIEF -- Prayer
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications

Date learned: 00001950S

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EPIPHANY CEREMONY

EACH YEAR ON THE FEAST OF EPIPHANY, JANUARY 6, THE FATHER
USING A WHITE CHALK, MAKES A CROSS OVER EACH DOORWAY.
NEXT TO THE CROSS HE WRITES THE YEAR. IT'S SYMBOLIC OF
ASKING GOD'S BLESSING ON ANYONE WHO ENTERS THE ROOMS
FOR THE REST OF THE YEAR. THE CROSS, SYMBOLIC OF CHRIST,
REMINDED EACH PERSON THAT GOD MANIFESTED HIMSELF AT THE
BAPTISM OF JESUS IN THE JORDAN RIVER.

Where learned: PENNSYLVANIA ; SHAMOKIN

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 6 Twelfth Day Epiphany
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Street Trip Relations between relatives, friends, host and guest Social class Rank
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Church
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Typical Elements of a Festive Pattern
BELIEF -- Prayer
BELIEF -- Word Letter
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications

Date learned: 00001970S

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EASTER BREAD-ITALIAN

THIS BREAD IS MADE BY FIRST BRAIDING THE DOUGH AND THEN FORMING IT
INTO A DOUGHNUT SHAPE. FOUR RAW EGGS ARE PLACED IN THE BRAID WITH
CROSSES MADE OF DOUGH PLACED OVER THEM. IT IS THEN BAKED.
THE HOLE IN THE MIDDLE OF THE BREAD IS FILLED WITH EASTER GRASS AND
EASTER CANDY BEFORE SERVED ON EASTER.

Submitter comment: THIS BREAD CAN ALSO BE MADE IN A LARGE QUANTITY AND SENT TO
NEIGHBORS AND FRIENDS AS EASTER GIFTS. MY MOTHER STILL CARRIES ON
THIS TRADITION.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; EAST DETROIT

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Spring Planting Elements
Food Drink -- Pastry Sweet Dessert
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications

Date learned: 00001970S

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WHEN I WAS A KID IF I DROPPED ANYTHING ON THE GROUND
I WOULD CROSS MYSELF WITH THE OBJECT IN MY HAND AND
SAY "GOD KISS IT, DEVIL MISS IT." THIS MADE ME
BELIEVE THAT THE OBJECT WAS CLEAN.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): SANITARY

Subject headings: Charm / Enchantment / Conjuration
Charm / Enchantment / Conjuration
Favorites
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
SPEECH -- Formula
SPEECH -- Gesture

Date learned: 04-00-1983

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IT IS POSSIBLE TO CURE A STY BY MAKING A CROSS OVER IT WITH A GOLD
WEDDING BAND AND THEN SPITTING OVER YOUR SHOULDER. THIS ENTIRE
PROCEDURE MUST BE REPEATED THREE TIMES.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; SAINT CLAIR SHORES

Subject headings: 686 Thirds / Thrice / Three / Triple
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
BELIEF -- Method of Curing

Date learned: 01-15-1984

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A DEMON HAS TWO FORMS, A SPIRITUAL LIFEFORCE, AND A
MATERIAL FORM, THE ONE THAT IS VISIBLE TO HUMANS. THERE
ARE TWO WAYS THAT A DEMON CAN BE DESTROYED WHILE IT IS
NOT IN HELL.
THE FIRST WAY IS TO DESTROY ITS MATERIAL FORM. THIS
CAN BE DONE WITH ANY AVAILABLE WEAPONS. ONCE THE MATERIAL
FORM IS UNABLE TO FUNCTION, THE DEMON'S LIFEFORCE RETURNS TO
HELL. A MINOR DEMON WILL SUFFER TORMENT FOR NINE YEARS
BEFORE RETURNING TO ITS ORIGINAL STATUS. A GREATER DEMON
WILL BE CONFINED TO A CERTAIN PLACE IN HELL FOR NINE YEARS
AND FURY IN HELL IS UNMATCHED DURING THAT PERIOD.
THE SECOND WAY TO DESTROY A DEMON IS TO DESTROY IT
PERMANENTLY, BOTH MATERIAL FORM AND LIFEFORCE. THIS
CAN BE DONE BY PLUNGING A SWORD OF IRON OR SILVER INTO
THE ENERGY CENTER OF THE DEMON'S BODY. THIS DESTROYS
THE DEMON PERMANENTLY, SHATTERING ITS LIFEFORCE INTO
NONEXISTENCE. THE ENERGY CENTER OF THE BODY IS
LOCATED JUST BELOW THE STERNUM.
A CRUCIFIX WILL WARD OFF A DEMON UNTIL IT RECOVERS
FROM THE INITIAL SHOCK OF SEEING IT. HOLY WATER
CAUSES SEVERE BURNS, AND DISABLES THE DEMON TEMPORARILY.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; NORTH BRANCH

Subject headings: 686 Ninths / Nine
BELIEF -- Devil Demon
BELIEF -- Body part Senses
BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications

Date learned: 10-00-1987 ; 11-00-1987

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IT IS SAID THAT THE CROSS THAT RESTS NEXT TO THE GRACE FAMILY
PLOT IN HUBARDSTON, MICHIGAN, ALIGNS ITSELF TO FACE THE HOME
OF THE NEXT MEMBER OF THE GRACE FAMILY THAT WILL DIE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; CARSON CITY

Subject headings: Observation
BELIEF -- Product or activity of man or animal
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications

View just this record

When you bake a fresh loaf of bread or get a loaf that has not
yet been cut, make the sign of the cross in the bottom before you
slice it.

Where learned: HUNGARY

Subject headings: Favorites
Food Drink -- Pastry Sweet Dessert Bread, rolls, etc.
BELIEF -- P681 P681.1
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications

Date learned: 00001950S

View just this record

Each year on the 6th of January, which is known as Epiphany,
after morning liturgy, the minister and the entire congregation of
some Greek churches go to a dock on the seafront, the minister
carrying a cross of silver or gold that stands about six inches high
by four inches wide. After the minister blesses the cross, he throws
it into the sea. Then boys ages 16 to 32 (32 symbolizing the age of
Jesus at his death) leap off the dock and into the sea searching
frantically for the cross. The one who finds it is said to be blessed
for the duration of the year.

Submitter comment: According to my informant, the minister and the select group of
boys may go on a boat just off shore instead of on the dock with the
congregation cheering them on from the shore. I was also told that
the cross, to the best of my informant's knowledge, has
always been found.

Where learned: GREECE

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 6 Twelfth Day Epiphany
BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- Measure of time Year
BELIEF -- Prayer
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
BELIEF -- Number P686.1.16
BELIEF -- Number P686.1.32
BELIEF -- Good luck

Date learned: 00001943CA

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