MINERS from the region of Upper Nitra in Slovakia on December 4, St Barbara’s Day, patron-saint of miners, organised their first šachtág, a funny feast hailing the old, as well as some new habits and rituals. The “unmistakable presidium” was for that special day Milan Durbák of the Banská Štiavncia-Horduša Miners’ Association from Banská Štiavnica. He helped the local miners organise the day which is rooted in the tradition of students of the old Mining Academy in Banská Štiavnica, founded in 1762 by Empress Maria Theresa – the first university of its kind in the world.
Šachtág included a little beer, entertainment, singing of miners’ songs, and accepting new members, called fuchses – who had to be led across a room by their ears, or answer many questions, including intimate ones – and if they succeeded, jump over a miner’s apron. In this way, several local politicians and a mine technology engineer were accepted.
The event was allegedly a success and chair of the association Vladimír Tulis promised, as quoted by the TASR newswire, to continue this new tradition in Prievidza.
19. Jan 2015 at 0:00 | Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská