Every day, I walk about 5 miles. There is a house in town that I pass daily that has a red Dala Horse as its street address sign. I have always known that these equine symbols are Swedish, but I did not know their significance. I love horses and I love to blog, so of course, a new blog entry was born.
Since Viking Times, the horse has been considered a holy animal. The Dala Horse (DalahÃ¤st) is a very popular Swedish souvenir.Â The name comes from Dalarna, in central Sweden.
During the long Swedish winters, long ago, the forerunner to the Dala Horse was created using simple tools. It was only natural that a horse would be a popular model to craft as the horse was invaluable in those days.
According to the story, in 1716, while King Charles XII of Sweden was at war with other parts of Europe, many soldiers stayed in the Mora section of Sweden. Rumor has it that one such soldier carved a Dala Horse from some scrap wood. Since red was a color readily available from a nearby copper mine, he painted it red and gave it to one of the children in the house.
The Dala Horse gained popularity when it was chosen by the National Crafts Union for part of the Swedish display at the Paris Exposition in the mid-19th century.Â Skills for creating the Dala Horse creation have been passed from generation to generation. It is one of the few folk traditions of Sweden still living.
The Dala Horse of today is still made by hand with pine, and takes about 9 different people to create it. The village of NusnÃ¤s, in Dalarna, is considered by some to be the home of the only authentic Swedish Dala Horses, with over 250,000 Dala Horses produced there annually.
To read more blogs from Sr. Localization Manager, Robyn, you can visit her personal blog site at http://www.languagelovah.blogspot.com/.
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