Easter Monday in Poland is a holiday and is called Śmigus-Dyngus (shming-oos-ding-oos) or Lany Poniedzialek (wet Monday). This is a wonderful day of fun. It was traditionally the day when boys tried to drench girls buckets of water. The more a girl is sprayed with water, the higher her chances are that she will get married. The girls get their chance for revenge the next day. Now Wet Monday is usually celebrated by everyone drenching or sprinkling each other. Basically it is a free-for-all good old fashioned water fight and NO ONE is immune, kids and parents alike get in on the action. I wonder why my father never instituted this tradition in our household?
The history of Śmigus-Dyngus goes back to the Middle Ages when it was called Oblewania.Some people say that by being splashed with water on Easter Monday will bring you good luck throughout the year. There is conflicting information as to the origin of this tradition. Some say it was a pagan ritual and that the pouring of water symbolized springtime to cleanse and purify. There are others who think that Dyngus represented renewal of the sacrament of baptism after Christ had risen. The third theory suggests that Dyngus is connected with Polish ruler Prince Mieszko the First who was baptized in 966 on Easter Monday. However you look at it, it is still a fun holiday!
Here I have shared 2 videos from YouTube of Śmigus-Dyngus celebrations. Enjoy! There are MANY more videos on YouTube to see. These videos are 100 times better than words.
I have been doing genealogy research since 2002 & have worked full time as a Professional Genealogist since 2008. I specialize in Polish and American-Canadian Genealogy. As a member of APG, I was the 2010/2011 President of the New England Chapter of the Association of Professional Genealogists (NEAPG). I have Certificates of Completion for studies in "Foundations of Forensic Genealogy" and "Advanced Forensic Genealogy Techniques". I have been a volunteer librarian at the local Family History Center, and a genealogy research consultant at “Ask the Expert” Ancestry Road Shows. I have traveled to Poland numerous times & researched in churches and archives. At conferences and special events, you may find me dressed up in my Sherlock Holmes outfit, or my Kujawy (the folk costume from the region in Poland where my ancestors came from).