Chalandamarz in Samedan


01 March 2025

Schoolhouse Square, Samedan

On March 1st, children parade through the village with bells and colorfully decorated hats, driving away winter with singing, cracking whips and ringing bells.

Chalandamarz, Chaland'avrigl, laschè las vachas our d'uvigl… The roots of Chalandamarz can be found in pagan times, with the Romans. The month of March is dedicated to Mars, the god of sun and war. According to the Julian calendar, the year began in March and in the warmer regions, spring also began. This event was celebrated with grandiose festivals to ask Mars for his blessing for the fields, meadows and livestock. The Romans also played an important role in the Engadin and left traces of their customs. The invisible spirits are driven away by cracking whips, ringing bells and singing. This noise is supposed to instill fear in the winter (spirit) and thus awaken fertility.

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