Sunday, 6 December 2015

Today: Independence Day of Finland

Independence Day of Finland is celebrated on December 06, 2015. 

Finland's Independence Dayis a national public holiday. 
It celebrates Finland's declaration of independence from Soviet Russia. 
The movement for Finland's Independence started after the revolutions in Russia, 
caused by the disturbances from the defeats of the First World War. 
This gave an opportunity for Finland to withdraw from Russia. 

After several disagreements between the non-socialists and the social-democrats 
about the matter of who should have the power in Finland, the Senate of Finland, 
led by Pehr Evind Svinhufvud, finally gave on 4 December 1917 a Declaration 
of Independence which was adopted by the parliament two days later. 

It is traditional for many Finnish families to light two candles in each window 
of their home in the evening. This custom dates to the 1920s, but even earlier, 
candles had been placed in windows on the birthday of poet Johan Ludvig Runeberg 
as a silent protest against perceived Russian oppression. 

A popular legend has it that two candles were used as a sign to inform young 
men on their way to Sweden and Germany to become j├Ągers that the house was 
ready to offer shelter and keep them hidden from the Russians.