primstav: boat wake day

On the 23rd of November is Saint Clemens’ Mass.  Saint Clemens’ was the 4th Bishop of Rome and because he allegedly died by having an anchor tied around his neck and thrown into the Black Sea, he is known as the patron Saint of sailors.  One of the farmer’s primstav marks for this day was an anchor. The other mark was a church as Saint Clemens was banished from Roman and sentenced to hard labour and he made the other prisoners build churches with him.

This day was known to farmer’s as ‘båtsok‘ or boat-wake day. This was the last day for ships to moor. Travel on the ocean should finish for the year.

The word ‘clemen‘ is very close to the Norwegian word klemme which means squeeze.  This was the day that parents would start to squeeze their children’s dinners, meaning that parents would give their children simpler food from this time so they would more appreciate the festive food at Christmas time.