Czech Pomlázka (a special handmade whip)
The German Schmeckostern: the beatings given to each other on Easter Monday and Tuesday by men and women in parts of Germany and Slavic countries to bring them good luck, protect them from vermin, and keep them young and healthy and, “green."
The men beat the women on Easter Monday, the women beat the men on Easter Tuesday.
The beatings are commonly given with birch branches, especially branches just sprouted, or sometimes with cherry, or with a willow switch. The new young life inherent in the sprouting branch is thus bestowed upon the one beaten with it.
(All in great fun of course!)
Leach, Maria. Funk & Wagnalls Standard Dictionary of Folklore: Mythology and Legend. New York, NY: Funk & Wagnalls, 1972. Print. In Reference Collection on Main Floor: R 398.042 F982.
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