This section is dedicated to the ethnologist and sociologist Ion Chelcea, whose destiny had been connected for more than four decades to the most important ethnographic museums in Romania. In his youth he worked at the Ethnographic Museum of Transylvania in Cluj; in adulthood he founded the Ethnographic Museum of Moldavia (1943), and remained its director until 1957; in the third part of his professional activity he worked at the Village Museum in Bucharest. The restitution of Ion Chelcea’s work has been one of the major purposes of the Yearly Review of the Ethnographic Museum of Moldavia since its first volume issued in 2001. This year we republish three articles signed by Chelcea eighty years ago. The first one, Faptul tradiţional românesc (Orice ocazie ni s-ar oferi, „aşa ar trebui să facem!”) – The Romanian Traditional Fact (On Any Occasion We Have, “This Is How We Should Do It!”), was published in 1935 in “Gazeta ilustrată” (“The Illustrated Gazette”), a periodical printed in Cluj. After having highlighted the importance and uniqueness of Christmas within the Romanian culture, Ion Chelcea argues for the safeguarding and promotion of the traditional customs, beliefs and order, as they represent, in his opinion, the way to singularize and perpetuate the Romanian people. The second article, Hobştiile de tors în Muşcel (Spinning Gatherings in Muşcel), published in the same periodical in 1937, describes a form of youth association in the traditional village, which has both practical and entertainment purposes. The last article, Plague’s Magical Removal in the Transylvanian Villages was published in “Societatea de mâine”. Revistă socială culturală (“The Society of Tomorrow”. A Social and Cultural Journal) and introduces us into the world of the magical beliefs. Analyzing traditional beliefs, the author approaches the two ways to apprehend and remove the plague: magically and religiously. The author examines the Romanian space by giving examples of plague’s removal in different regions of the country, but he also refers to the foreign specific literature.
Keywords: traditional element, feast, Christmas, caroling, forms of youth association, plague shirt, magical practices, religious practices.
Cuvinte-cheie: element tradiţional, sărbătoare, Crăciun, colindat, forme de asociere ale tinerilor, cămaşa ciumei, practici magice, practici religioase.