The advent of spring (TAVASZ) in Hungarian minds is associated to March and signalled by at least four things: the arrival of the storks from Africa (the first one has landed in Gemenc last week), a cry-out for a new love, the eruption of revolution(s) (in particular the1848 Revolution on March 15) and the appearance of the firstlings on the market vegetable stalls, collectively called PRIMŐR, a precise Hungarianised from of the French ”primeurs.”
The most typical of PRIMŐR ZÖLDSÉGEK (firstling ’green-ness-es’ i.e. vegetables) are RETEK (piros, fehér, fekete – red, white,black radishes), SÁRGARÉPA (lit. yellow beet i.e. carrots) and MEDVEHAGYMA (lit. bear onion i.e. wood garlic or ramson) which grows in the wild throughout Hungary, especially in oak and beech forests and has gained popularity recently.
Hungary is still a seasonal country. There is a season for everything. I wonder how associations to spring vary in other cultures. Feel free to share your views.
Foreign language enthusiasts will surely enjoy one of the most popular tongue twisters every Hungarian child is made to practice (especially the ones having trouble to pronounce a rolled ’r’):
RÉPA RETEK MOGYORÓ, KORÁN REGGEL RITKÁN RIKKANT A RIGÓ
Carrot, radish, hazelnut, early morning rarely calls the blackbird.
Listen to the lovely voice of the child reciting the rhyme: