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These gigantic instruments are now used only on fête days, but in times past, when Transylvania was one of Christendom's outposts against the Turk, they were blown to warn the countryside of the approach of invaders from the East. The horns are made in two sections, then bound together, and they cannot be blown until soaked in water and allowed to swell tight.
While for the most part Rumanian costumes are riots of color, the traveler occasionally encounters villages where for many years nothing but black and white have been worn, as in the case of these peasants of a town in the Campina district of Transylvania (see, also, page 324).
A WAGONLOAD OF REEDS FOR THE VILLAGE BASKET WEAVERS
Photograph by Erdelyi
For centuries the Rumanians in Transylvania had to make practically everything they used. Prior to 1848 the peasants were held in serfdom, and the habit of supplying their own wants became so strong that even now most of the things they use are made at home. Everything worn by these men is homemade, the coats being of a sort of felt, the hats of sheepskin, the trousers of homespun wool, and the boots are made by the village cobbler from domestic cowhide. The load of reeds will soon be converted into baskets.
PASTORAL WEALTH IN RAGMANI
In Rumania each village has a community shepherd, a cowherd, and a swineherd. Early each morning these men blow their horns, and the villagers lead out their stock and turn it over to the herdsmen. The animals are tended all day on community pasture lands and brought safely back at night. Each cow, sheep, and pig knows its own home and leaves the herd upon reaching its destination.
SAXON BOYS WHOSE FOREFATHERS CAME TO TRANSYLVANIA CENTURIES AGO
The Germans and Rumanians have intermarried little in Transylvania, and both peoples have retained their racial purity. Some of the customs of each, however, have felt the influence of the other. Especially is this true of costumes, where the Rumanian influence has been particularly strong. These boys wear such clothes on Sundays and holidays only.