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Giorni della merla

According to a beautiful Italian legend, the last three days of January (29th, 30th and 31st) are traditionally known as the coldest days of the whole winter. They are called the Giorni della merla (Days of the Blackbird) because the main character is a brave white blackbird and his family. At the same time, we also learn why blackbirds are now black.

Once upon a time, it was so cold at the end of January that the white blackbird family had to hide in the chimney to keep from freezing. They only came out on February 1, all black with soot - they have remained that colour ever since.


According to another story, the beautiful pure white blackbird was then tormented every year by the month of January, which at that time had only 28 days. As soon as the blackbird came out of its hiding place to forage for food, January sent a frost and snowstorm at it each time. One year, the blackbird prepared for it, making provisions for the entire month so it wouldn't have to come out, and thus stayed hidden in the warmth for the entire month of January. On the last day of January, he came out and started singing happily, which made January so angry that he borrowed three days from the month of February (he still had all 31 of them then) and sent such a cold that the blackbird had to hide in the chimney. When he came out after three days, his beautiful white feathers were forever blackened with soot.


And finally, a little prediction: it is said that if these "blackbird" days are cold, it will be a beautiful spring. On the contrary, if it is warm, spring will come later.

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