A custom of the ancient Greeks for the festive day of the coming of the new year is "the breaking of the pomegranate". This custom was initially found in the Peloponnese, although it later spread to every corner of Greece and continues to this day.
On New Year's morning, the family goes to church, all dressed in their best to attend the Liturgy of St. Basil and welcome the new year with everything good and blessed. On the way back, the householder has a blessed pomegranate in his pocket, makes the omen and breaks the pomegranate. He must ring the bell at the closed front door and have others open it. He is not allowed to open it with his key. So he is the first to enter the house to make the omen with the pomegranate in hand.
Entering, with his right foot, he breaks the pomegranate behind the front door to throw his nipples everywhere and at the same time he says: "with health, happiness and joy in the new year and as many nipples as there are pomegranates, so many pounds in our pocket all year round."
The children gathered around - look around the nipples to be crisp and crimson. The stronger and more beautiful the nipples, the happier and more blessed will be the days that the new year brings with it.
Another wish that is commonly said when breaking a pomegranate is: "The heavier the pomegranate, the heavier our wallet, the fuller the pomegranate, the fuller our house is and the redder the pomegranate so let our heart be red too! "
The power of the pomegranate
The words pomegranate (Rode) and pomegranate tree (Rodia), in addition to their obvious etymological relation to the island of Rhodes, are directly related to the concepts of flow and power.
So the power of this fruit is characteristic in Greek mythology and not only, since the historical data related to this fruit are inexhaustible.
In ancient Greece it was believed that the power of the pomegranate was hidden in its numerous grains (abundance and fertility), but also in its purple color (a color that brings good luck).
It is no coincidence that, even today, it is one of the most expressive symbols of Greek folklore, with a strong presence in every form and expression of traditional life.
The customs associated with the pomegranate, vary in practice from place to place and differ from each other like the parts of Greece where we find it.
The most famous of course are its use in the preparation of ritual memorial food, its participation in various phases of the wedding customary cycle and of course, its breaking on New Year's Eve as a sign of a good omen for the new year.