As far back as in the end of XIX century with joining to Russian Empire, Armenia began to celebrate the beginning of calendar year with bright and funny holiday with traditional feast, gifts under decorated New-Year’s tree, salutes and petards.
Almost for century this holiday became so favorite one for people that became the good tradition for centuries.
This holiday is full of not only romance but also a set of wonderful customs, rituals and traditions. On the evening before the holiday the unmarried girls and single guys pray to the saint, asking for help in their love affairs, eat salty cakes to see in a dream of their betrothed. Sarkis with his beloved visit homes of all Armenians who left for him on the roof or on the verge the dish with milled roasted wheat.
And if in the morning the meal has the trace of the horse's hoof, the great success is expected in one’s personal life.
After great feast, when all forty soldiers intoxicated went to sleep, forty girls on the order of emperor thrust the sharp daggers in the hearts of slept young men.
Only one of them disobeyed the order: enchanted by the beauty of Sarkis, she passionately kissed him.
As in Russia, Christmas in Armenia is the great family holiday, which gathers at festive, richly laid table the whole family.
In the whole world the patron of all lovers is the Saint Valentine, whose celebration is observed on February 14.
In the morning, believers gather in churches on Christmas liturgy and the Communion.
Then the Great Blessing of Waters is performed, when the water in the font, symbolizing the Jordan River, is sanctified by Life-giving Holy Cross, and then is handed out to parishioners as a healing body and soul.