Vardavar: ‘The wet holiday’
This is what our camera captured in Yerevan’s streets
Vardavar is the people’s favorite summer holiday. It commemorates the Transfiguration of Jesus Christ, and is one of the major holidays of the Armenian Apostolic Church. It is celebrated on the 98th day after Easter and stems back to the country’s pre-Christian period.
According to legend, Saint Gregory the Illuminator, the first Armenian Catholicos, created this holiday on the first day of the month, Navasard (on 11 August). Thus, the pagan holiday is celebrated on this day, with its features having been preserved in a ritual wherein the Transfiguration of Christ is celebrated.
It is believed that the water, which people pour over each another on this day, has healing powers, and also brings luck and happiness. Therefore, a person who gets splashed with this water should not be offended. On the contrary, he/she should be thankful for this blessing. And you should splash this person in return!