Nowruz Roudha, coinciding with March 10, is one of the celebrations of ancient Iran, in which Iranians dredge and clean rivers, springs, and canals. Another ceremony of this day is sprinkling roses in and around the rivers. Nowruz Roudha which celebrates before Nowruz is a celebration of ancient Iranians’ appreciation and attention to nature and running water.
History of the Nowruz Roudha
Abu Rihan al-Biruni writes about this celebration: “The 19th of Sepandar Maz was celebrated under the name of ‘Rivers and Current Flowers’, and it was then that water flowed in the rivers and flowers bloomed and the atmosphere became fragrant. On this day, people went to the plains and deserts and places where flowing streams and springs flowed and poured roses and perfume into the water during ceremonies.
Makmouni also wrote: “The nineteenth day of this month was called the day of Farvardin and this day is also called Nowruz Roudha. Rivers and streams should flow and Ma’vard and Tayyib should be poured into it” and considering that Esfand is the last month that Makmouni has mentioned before his statement, then he must mean the 19th of Esfandmah.
Gardizi also writes about the Nowruz Roudha: “And on this day, they pour water on their places, and it is the name of an angel who is entrusted with water.”
In the celebration of Nowruz Roudha, people would go to the rivers, streams, and springs and after dredging and cleaning, they would dance and make happy times and pour fragrant materials, beautiful flowers, and roses into the water, and by performing this ceremony, they were appreciating for re-flowing and preparing them for the arrival of spring.
From the study of the history and culture of the land, one realizes the dependence of man on nature. The ancient Iranians valued nature and all their ceremonies and rituals were in praise and appreciation of the elements of nature. Today’s man, however, causes destruction wherever he steps. And we are prone to extinction and climate change. We hope that with the celebration of Iranian ceremonies such as Nowruz Roudha, we will have more respect for nature and natural elements and pass it on to future generations.