The vine-harvest was a real festival in the life of a village. During the 20th century, it was held even in the settlements where grapevines were not cultivated. The harvest began with making noises. Grape-pickers infested the vineyards early in the morning and started working.
Pickers – usually women and girls – cut the stems of bunches with curved knives and put them to the locally used gathering containers. Then the bunches were put into the men’s grape-baskets carried on their backs, shoulders or hands. After pouring the grapes into tubs, they started mincing or stomping them. You can watch the process on the newsreel below broadcasting a vine-harvest festival from the picturesque Mecsekalja of Pécs. In some picture-frames you can see the inevitable brass-band, the violin and the dance as well.
If you do not have the opportunity to visit a real vine-harvest, you might join the ‘Füredi Szüret’ festival in Balatonfüred, where anyone can enjoy the festive feeling of a harvest.
Translated by Zita Aknai