Cultura etíope y eritrea

Categoría: English

Genna, the Ethiopian Christmas

The Ethiopian Christmas differs in many aspects from ours, even though both have the same origin and meaning. While we celebrate it on a fixed date, December 25th, in Ethiopia, they do so in a cyclical manner due to the peculiarities of their calendar. The day of Genna (Christmas) falls on the 29th of the month of Tahsas for three years, and on the 28th of Tahsas in the fourth year. Neither of the two days coincides with our Christmas day since Ethiopians use a calendar based on the Julian system, and their Christmas begins in our month of January. Additionally, Christmas day must be celebrated nine months and five days after the Annunciation to fulfill the gestation period.

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Timkat, the Ethiopian Epiphany

Baños de Fasiladas
Fasiledes’ Pool during Timkat celebration. Source: Wikipedia.

The Timkät festival, Timkat or Timket, is one of the most famous celebrations in Ethiopia and Eritrea. It takes place on the 11th day of the month of Terr, which usually corresponds to our January 19, although due to the peculiarity of the Ethiopian calendar, in leap years it would coincide with January 20. It commemorates the baptism of Christ in the Jordan River by Saint John the Baptist, an event celebrated throughout Christendom, but of special importance in Ethiopian tradition.

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