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We will send regular newsletters to our members who have signed up for receiving it during the registration. In 'mymerhaba' newsletter, our editorial staff provides updates, with regard to any information related to places worth visiting, viewing, or otherwise worth knowing, for those who care to know more....

Religious Habits

Ramazan ornaments
During Ramazan you will hear drums thundering at dawn. Don't be surprised. This is a custom from the times when alarm clocks were non-existent. The drummer's role is to wake up the faithful for the last meal before fasting begins for the day. Just before Bayram and certainly during Bayram the drummer of your district will knock on your door for a tip. Relatives are invited to iftar, the meal following the fast at sunset. Near iftar time, bakeries are full of newly baked warm pides, (which are rarely found at other times) and of course there are long queues.

Kissing the hands of older family members is an obligatory ceremony of Bayram. Some families get together at the house of the oldest family member and have a “Bayram meal” all together. The elders give candy or money to those youngsters kissing their hands. In the past, gold coins and money were given however unfortunately this habit has been essentially lost, due to financial reasons.

It is tradition to call the older members of the family during Kandils and wish them “İyi kandiller” (Have a nice Kandil!). Your neighbors will bring you helva (a special Turkish dessert made of semolina or flour). It would be a nice gesture to return the dish filled with something you prepared. You can buy the Kandil Simidi (special small crispy bread ring strewn with or without sesame seeds) sold at Kandils at almost everywhere.

Mevlit is also among the customs of Turkish Muslims. Mevlit is a very long poem written by Süleyman Çelebi telling and praising the life of the Prophet Muhammed. Later it became a prayer sung as a hymn and chanted on happy and sad days. It is chanted on events such as death, anniversaries, births, circumcision and even when you purchase a new house. The mevlit chanted in mosques, becomes a social meeting among women when chanted at home. After the prayer, if the mevlit took place at a mosque, candies in cone shaped packages are distributed. An incredibly rich five o'clock tea table is set after home mevlits. If you get a mevlit invitation whether it is going to be held at home or mosque don't forget to take a scarf with you, to be used to cover your hair. Also be sure to wear thick wool socks for mevlits at mosques in wintertime.




Addressing
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Latest comments about this article

 By pkrajovic  21.9.2007

Actually, the drummers don´t do their thing at ”dawn” (”thundering”?) but way before - in my neighborhood they seem to think it´s necessary to wake the faithful at 2:30 AM! Aren´t they supposed to be prohibited in parts of the city? Like Beyoglu?

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Addressing
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Hidrellez - Spring Feast
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