Got an idea for a holiday? Send it to us

Submit Now

International Martisor – March 1, 2023

International Martisor takes place in Romania every year at the beginning of spring, on March 1. Martisor has become a symbol of friendship, appreciation, respect, and love. Giving people the talisman called ‘Mărțișor’ or ‘Marț,’ a red and white little mascot with a hanging tassel, is an old custom. It is believed that the wearer will be strong and healthy for the year to come. Both men and women wear it pinned to their clothes, close to the heart, until the last day of March, when they tie it to a fruit-tree twig.

History of International Martisor

Some ethnologists believe that ‘Mărțișor’ has a Roman origin while others believe it has a Daco-Thracian origin instead. New Year’s Eve was celebrated on March 1 as ‘Martius’ in Ancient Rome. The month was named in honor of the god Mars, the god of war who was also an agricultural guardian and who ensured nature’s rebirth. The red and white colors used for Mărțișor may be considered to be colors of war and peace.

New Year’s Eve was also observed on March 1 by the Thracians. They named the month after the god named Marsyas Silen, the inventor of the ‘fluier,’ a traditional musical instrument similar to the pipe. Thracian spring celebrations had connections to fertility and the rebirth of nature. Daco-Romanians still celebrate the agrarian New Year in spring in some parts of the world. In these areas, the first days of March are considered days of a new beginning.

Ancient Roman tradition stated that March was the perfect time to embark on military campaigns. Within this context, the red string of Mărțișor symbolizes vitality. The white string symbolizes victory. Red is considered to be the color of fire, blood, and a symbol of life, which is also associated with the passion of women. Red and white are also complementary colors present in traditional Daco-Romanian folklore.

International Martisor timeline

8,000 years ago
The Start of Martisor

Martisor’s first celebrations start about 8,000 years ago.

1859
The Independence of Romania

Romania gains independence and becomes a sovereign state.

1920s
A Historical Connection

A Bulgarian writer named Nikolay Raynov publishes literary work that links this Bulgarian tradition to Khan Asparukh.

2020
Martisor is Toned Down

The celebration of Martisor is toned down due to the global pandemic.

International Martisor FAQs

Do children participate?

Yes. Children have received ‘martisoare’ from their parents since the end of the nineteenth century.

Who has popularly received Martisor?

As ‘martisor,’ the Mayor of Constanta, Radu Mazare, received a baby kangaroo he named ‘Boogie.’

Are goats used in Martisor?

As a child, Anamaria Prodan, a football club manager, received a goat wearing a ‘martisor’ at its neck.

International Martisor Activities

  1. Learn about Romania

    You can learn more about the country by doing some research. You’ll find out more about its people and culture.

  2. Visit Romania

    You can visit the country to experience their culture in person. There are many activities that you would enjoy in Romania.

  3. Share the holiday

    You can share the holiday with people you know. You can do this online or share it in person.

5 Interesting Facts About Martisor

  1. It is agriculture related

    Martisor originated in agricultural practices since Romans celebrated it at the beginning of Spring.

  2. Mars protected the environment

    Romans believed in the god Mars, who was responsible for the protection of the fields and the flocks.

  3. It represents harmony

    Combining the two-color strings of Martisor symbolizes harmony.

  4. Animals are included

    The celebration is called ‘Martenita’ in Bulgaria, and even animals receive ‘martisoare.’

  5. There are legends

    One of the Martisor legends says that a dragon kidnapped the sun for three seasons until winter when a brave man confronted the dragon.

Why We Love International Martisor

  1. It maintains tradition

    The holiday is an old tradition that has been passed on for many years. It keeps the younger generation in tune with their culture.

  2. It makes people happy

    Giving and receiving a Martisor makes people happy. It is a tradition of love and appreciation.

  3. It brings unity

    The holiday helps people with similar beliefs to come together for a common purpose. It creates love and unity in the community.

International Martisor dates

YearDateDay
2023March 1Wednesday
2024March 1Friday
2025March 1Saturday
2026March 1Sunday
2027March 1Monday
Hearing Awareness Week
National Will Eisner Week
North Dakota Winter Show
Universal Human Beings Week
Asiatic Fleet Memorial Day
Baby Sleep Day
Endometriosis Awareness Day
Independence Movement Day
International Ideas Month
International Martisor
Lavity Stoutt's Birthday
National Black Women in Jazz and the Arts Day
National Dadgum That's Good Day
National Fruit Compote Day
National Horse Protection Day
National Hotel Slipper Day
National March First Day
National Minnesota Day
National Peanut Butter Lover's Day
National Pig Day
National Sage Day
National Texas Stress Day
National Wedding Planning Day
National Welsh Corgi Day
Peace Corps Day
Plan a Solo Vacation Day
Public Risk Management Awareness Day
Refired Not Retired Day
Self-Injury Awareness Day
Share a Smile Day
St. David's Day
Stop Bad Service Day
World Civil Defense Day
World Compliment Day
World Music Therapy Day
World Seagrass Day
Yap Day
Zero Discrimination Day
Academy Awards Month
Adopt a Rescued Guinea Pig Month
Alport Syndrome Awareness Month
American Red Cross Month
Berries and Cherries Month
Bleeding Disorders Awareness Month
Brain Injury Awareness Month
Colic Awareness Month
Colorectal Cancer Education and Awareness Month
Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) Awareness Month
Dolphin Awareness Month
Employee Spirit Month
Endometriosis Month
Exotic Winter Fruit & Leeks and Green Onions Month
Expanding Girls' Horizons in Science and Engineering Month
Gardening, Nature and Ecology Books Month
Gender Equality Month
Greek-American Heritage Month
Honor Society Awareness Month
Humorists are Artists Month
Irish-American Heritage Month
Listening Awareness Month
Mad for Plaid Month
Malignant Hyperthermia Awareness and Training Month
March Madness
Marie Curie Great Daffodil Appeal
Middle Level Education Month
Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month
National Athletic Training Month
National Bed Month (U.K.)
National Breast Implant Awareness Month
National Caffeine Awareness Month
National Celery Month
National Cerebral Palsy Awareness Month
National Cheerleading Safety Month
National Color Therapy Month
National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month
National Crafting Month
National Credit Education Month
National Crochet Month
National Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month
National Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month
National Endometriosis Awareness Month
National Essential Tremor Awareness Month
National Ethics Awareness Month
National Eye Donor Month
National Flour Month
National Frozen Food Month
National Kidney Month
National March Into Literacy Month
National Music in Our Schools Month
National Noodle Month
National Nutrition Month
National Optimism Month
National Peanut Month
National Professional Social Worker's Month
National Reading Month
National Sauce Month
National Social Work Month
National Umbrella Month
National Women's History Month
NZ Book Month
Poison Prevention Awareness Month
Read an E-Book Month
Red Cross Month
Save Your Vision Awareness Month
Sing With Your Child Month
Small Press Month
Spiritual Wellness Month
Supply Management Month
The Great Daffodil Appeal
Trisomy Awareness Month
Vascular Anomalies Awareness Month
Veggie Month
Women’s Month (Philippines)
Workplace Eye Wellness Month
Youth Art Month

Holidays Straight to Your Inbox

Every day is a holiday!
Receive fresh holidays directly to your inbox.