Spinning and Weaving on Kihnu

Estonia - Fiber ArtistsSpinning and Weaving on Kihnu Island, Estonia

UNESCO proclaimed Kihnu’s cultural space and traditions as a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity on November 7, 2003. The Baltic islands of Manija and Kihnu are home to a small group of traditional people. For many years, the men of Kihnu have been frequently gone to sea while the women ran the island and became the guardians of the island’s cultural heritage, which includes handicrafts, dances, games and music. Music is an especially important part of the island’s traditions, and accompanies handicrafts, religious feasts and other celebrations. Ancient runo-styled songs are also important, as are traditional clothings adorned with decorations and bright colours that symbolize ancient legends and poems. The people of Kihnu speak a dialect of Estonian which is sometimes considered as a distinct language.

Estonia - Fiber Artists stamps

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