Southern Kashubia

The best-known and popular element of local art is the Kashubian embroidery, with origins in the 18th Century. Until the present day, embroideresses decorate linen according to traditional patterns with the use of suitable colours to decorate holiday tables.

In Chmielno we can see how respective members of the Necel family manually form clay vessels with a wheel powered by the potters’ legs. The jugs, bowls and vases created in such a way are decorated with patterns characteristic of the Necel ceramics – lilac twigs, fish scales, small tulips, the Kashubian star, Kashubian garlands, lilies and large tulips.

In the ethnographic open-air village museum in Wdzydze Kiszewskie one can enter a traditional Kashubian chëcz, i.e. a cottage in which Kashubians used to live. Inside, traditional furniture is presented, especially bed settles and kitchen cupboards, which are manually made by woodcarvers. Kashubian art also comprises glass painting and the plaiting of various items from pine roots.

In the time free from fieldwork and household chores Kashubians would gather in their chëczë or taverns to enjoy themselves and dance to Kashubian music, together with their families and neighbours. The dancing was accompanied by the sound of the bazury (a Masurian instrument), which, accompanied by the Devil’s fiddle and the burczybas (a kind of double bass in the shape of a barrel with a horse-hair tail) played lively melodies Those who needed to restore their energy lost during dancing the Koseder sat at copiously-laden tables to savour delicious dishes of Kashubian cuisine. Home-made bread, Kashubian herring and Kashubian raspberry are just some examples of the local delicacies. “Jo jem najedłi ë napiti, ale muszi tabaką bëc nos przebiti”- according to this saying, every true Kashubian after a meal should sniff some snuff from his snuff box.

Up to the present day such feasts and banquets are organised, so to get to know the Kashubian culture, its traditions and ceremonies, and most of all to hear the dialect, you should visit the land of the Griffin, which will lead you along the Kashubian Road to the very heart of Kashubia.

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