All Lovers Day celebrated in Kazakhstan on Wednesday

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The Kazakhstani analog of St. Valentine’s Day, Kozy-Korpesh and Bayan-Sulu Day, is celebrated on Wednesday, April 15.

Kazakhstan has celebrated its national All Lovers Day, “Ұлттық ғашықтар күніне орай”, since 2011.

This feast was created in opposition to Valentine’s Day, celebrated on 14 February. In Kazakhstan they consider Valentine’s Day to promote immorality and to be uncharacteristic of the local mentality. Some socially active people called for banning its celebration in schools.

Kozy-Korpesh and Bayan-Sulu are characters of a Kazakhstani lyric-epic poem of the 13-14th centuries, written in the middle of the 19th century. According to the legend, two friends decided to betroth their future children. They had a son, named Kozy-Korpesh and a daughter Bayan-Sulu. Kozy Korpesh’s father died while hunting even before the birth of his son. Without seeing each other the children fell in love. But with time, the girl’s father decided to change his promise to marry her to his friend’s son Kozy and wanted to marry her to Kodar-kula who saved his herd. When Kozy-Korpesh grew up, he learned that he had a betrothed bride and went to look for her. Then, he was killed by Kodar. Bayan Sulu decided to take revenge on the murderer. She promised to marry Kodar if he carried out some tasks, among them - digging a deep well. Kodar began to dig a well, plunging into it and holding Bayan’s hair. Then she cut off her braids and the unloved bridegroom fell into the well and died. Bayan Sulu committed suicide at the grave of her true lover Kozy-Korpesh.

Text and pictures by IA Novosti-Kazakhstan