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Writer: Mustafa Kaya
May 2009

The mysterious practices of Anatolia are never falsified. They have been keeping many pieces left from the primitive societies like a treasure. Like every Ürgüp inhabitants, as a Cappadocia lover, I am proud of having Nahıl practice of whole Anatolia only in Ürgüp. Nahıl practice can be seen as a continuation of the old symbols used by primitive societies for fertility such as May Pillar, Hereafter Branch and Life Tree. It is known that it used to be used in every house of Anatolia during marriage and circumcision ceremonies but it started to be forgotten at the beginning of XIX century.
The principle of the practice is to bring to the groom’s house with a parade the ‘nahıl’, which is 2 meter high and decorated by colorful papers and candles, together with different kinds of food from the bride’s house.  The ritual in groom’s house has two steps one is ‘praising nahıl’ and the other is ‘rescuing moth’; both are done by only a group of man accompanied by a clarinet and a bağlama (a kind of Turkish instrument). After these, nahıl is brought to bridal chamber. The main aim of the practice is to promote marriage among the single ones, to make closer the new married ones and to encourage the fertility.
The very last implementer of nahıl practice which comes from the primitive societies until today is Ziya Uçaravcı aged 85. Since there is no one ready to take his place, unfortunately like many other mystical practices of Anatolia, nahıl practice might have its place in the endlessness. Why not to work on including this practice in UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage List as a third composition from Turkey?

Note: This article has been published in Peribacası Cappadocia Culture and Publicity Magazine, May 2009 issue. It is under protection of the copyrights of the magazine. No part of this article may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by electronic, mechanical or other means without prior permission from the owner.

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Reading Reading: 2811 Eklenme Tarihi Date: 2009-06-23
1956 A praising nahıl ceremony
1956 A praising nahıl ceremony
Ziya Uçaravcı
Ziya Uçaravcı

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