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    * Haji Firooz *

    Haji firouz,Hâjji Fîrûz

    حاجی فیروز

    In Iranian culture, Haji Firooz or Khawja Piruz is the traditional herald of the Nowruz season. Wearing black make-up and a red costume, Haji Firooz sings and dances through the streets with tambourines and trumpets spreading good cheer and the news of the coming New Year.Importantance of Haji Firooz:The sound of his songs and the sight of his dance is often analogous to hearing Christmas music in a shopping mall, telling all that Nowruz is in the air. Haji Firooz's intentions and spirit have always been well-received and loved by the people. The appearance of Haji Firuz is related to creating a happy atmosphere in the families. Norooz must begin with joy, happiness and laughter so that during the rest of the year the families will continue to be happy. It is for this reason that during these days there are people with funny makeup and joyful songs who will bring laughter and joy to families and with their comical jests and songs bring laughter to houses, streets and market places.Fire holds an important role for Zoroastrians. It appears that Haji Firooz represents the red-dressed fire keepers of the Zoroastrians, who at the last Tuesday of the year, was sent by the white-dressed Moghs (Zoroastrian priests) to spread the news about the arrival of the Nowruz. The fire-keeper's second duty was to call on the people to burn their old items in the fire, and to renew their life and regain health by obtaining the solved energy of the fire. The dark colour of the fire-keeper's face is allegedly caused by the heat of the holy fire. Fire-keepers use of rather unfamiliar expressions combined with their humorous nature, brought laughter to people's faces.Mehrdad Bahar opined that the figure of the Haji Firooz is derived from ceremonies and legends connected to the epic of prince Siavash, which are in turn derived from those associated with the Mesopotamian deities of agriculture and flocks, Tammuz (Sumerian:Dumuzi).Later , he claimed that Haji Firooz’s blackened face symbolizes his returning from the world of the dead, his red clothing is the sign of Siavash’s red blood and the coming to life of the sacrificed deity, while his joviality is the jubilation of rebirth, typical of those who bring rejuvenation and blessing along with themselves .He speculates that the name Siyāwaxš might mean "black man" or "dark-faced man" and suggests that the black part of the name may be a reference either to the blackening of the faces of the participants in the afore-mentioned Mesopotamian ceremonies, or to the black masks that they wore for the festivities.Etymology:Haji Firuz is also called Khawja Piruz, Khawja means master and Piruz/Firuz means successful. "Haji" in here is just a form of address and has nothing to do with the Islamic (Haajhi) hajj, like using 'sir' to address a gentleman in English without the person being a knight in the technical sense.Group: Iranian culture

    Tags:Haji, Iranian, Islamic, Mehrdad, Norooz, Nowruz, Siavash, Zoroastrian

    See Also:Haji firouz

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