The Romanian spring-celebrating tradition of “martisor” was admitted this week to UNESCO’s Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, in a decision taken at the 12th session of the Intergovernmental Committee on Safeguarding the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in Jeju, South Korea.
In a Facebook post, Romania’s representative to this UNESCO agency Adrian Cioroianu voiced his satisfaction at this success: “…The ‘martisor’ entered the select list of UNESCO’s intangible cultural heritage! Romania submitted the file alongside another three countries – Bulgaria, FRY Macedonia and the Republic of Moldova – which all hold this beautiful spring tradition – with certain differences in form, but in the same spirit of celebrating the rebirth of nature.”
Also enthusiastically hailing the breakthrough, former Culture Minister Ionut Vulpescu revisited his own efforts as a government member towards this success: “The ‘martisor’ was accepted for being inscribed on UNESCO’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity! The decision was taken in South Korea, at the session of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage. This spring exactly on March 1 I held a press conference, when I spoke of the progress made by the file. Two weeks later, attending in Paris, together with Republic of Moldova’s Minister of Culture Monica Babuc, an event organized by the Embassy of Romania, we jointly promoted the file in front of Chairman of the UNESCO Executive Board Michael Worbs and of the members of the diplomatic corps accredited to Paris. We are happy and pleased that our efforts have yielded results,” Ionut Vulpescu wrote on Facebook
The practice of ‘martisor’ consists mainly of wearing a white-and-red braided thread with silk tassels to celebrate the arrival of spring.