Romanian Culture and Society

 Romanians tend to be relatively introverted and shy, though once they open up, you are guaranteed to form a lasting friendship. First impressions count, and most choose to be silent rather than risking saying something impolite or foolish. Meeting someone’s gaze in public is not as taboo as in other countries in Europe, though, unsurprisingly, staring is.

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Romanian Cuisine

The cuisine of Romania has the same influences as the rest of Romanian culture; from Roman times there still exists the simple pie called, in Romanian, plăcintă and keeping the initial meaning of the Latin word placenta. The Turks brought meatballs (fried mititei or perişoare in a soup called ciorbă); from the Greeks there is the musaca (moussaka) and covrigi (hot pretzels); from the Bulgarians, a wide variety of vegetable dishes like zacuscă; from the Austrians there is the şniţel (schnitzel); from the Hungarians, their ornate pastries; and the list could go on.

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Folklore in Romania

The most striking thing about Romanian culture is the strong folk traditions which have survived to this day due to the rural character of the Romanian communities, which has resulted in an exceptionally vital and creative traditional culture. Romania's rich folk traditions have been nourished by many sources, some of which predate the Roman occupation. Traditional folk arts include wood carving, ceramics, weaving and embroidery of costumes, household decorations, dance, and richly varied folk music.

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Sâmbra oilor

This ancient tradition takes place on the Huta Certeze hill in the Maramureș region. It marks the beginning of the transhumance, the movement of livestock from the place they spent the winter in to summer pastures. On the first Sunday of May, people gather to party and have picnics, while shepherds make the necessary deals and arrangements for the coming months. On this day, people of the region wear their best folk costumes, something unique in today’s Romania, where few regions still preserve the traditional wear.

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