The name Ederlezi comes from turkish Hidirellez, name of the holidays announcing the begining of the spring, occuring 40 days after spring equinoxe. Balkanic slavs added a christian dimension on the day of Saint-Georges.
Hidrellez is a very important day in Anatolia : the word in itself tells much ; it is the combination of the names of two prophets : Hizir & Ilyas. Hidrellez means re-birth of nature and is considered as the begining of the summer.
Anatolian beliefs say that Hizir and Ilyas were prophets and friends who would have drunk the water of immortality. The would have made the promess to see each other again each night of the 5th of may, to give birth to nature, every year again. Hizir is the protector of plants and poor people ; he brings abundance everywhere he goes.
Ilyas is the protector of waters and animals ; he give good health everywhere he goes.
People believe that the wishes made this night will become true ; that the ills will be healed, and that it will be the end of misfortune…
There are also a lot of rituals : some put a coin in a red bag and hang it to a rose. The next morning the money is put back in the purse and it should bring abundance.
Today, this day is mostly known as the good occasion to make big picnics in the nature…