Jordanian Samer: A vibrant celebration of cultural heritage and unity

samer night
(Photo: Twitter)
AMMAN — In the diverse tapestry of Jordanian culture, the Samer stands as a symbol of joyful expression. Rooted in Jordanian folklore, it emerges as a vibrant celebration, especially embraced during weddings, where bonds of kinship and friendship intertwine.اضافة اعلان

Recognizing its cultural significance, UNESCO embraced the melodies of the Jordanian Samer in 2018, acknowledging it as part of Jordan's intangible cultural heritage.

Alongside the Samer, other artistic forms like the Shorouqi serenading the rababa and the Hijaini contribute their own unique elements to the rich cultural mosaic of Jordan, as reported by the Jordan News Agency, Petra.

The essence of the SamerAs we delve deeper into its origins, we uncover the essence of the Samer.

Youssef Habbashneh, a heritage researcher, reveals that the term "Samer" draws its life force from the enchanting nights of "Al-Samar Al-Layli," where it unfolds its splendor, especially in the realm of matrimonial jubilation.

Predominantly performed by men, the Samer is known by various names such as "Al-Dhaha," "Al-Dhahyah," or "Al-Suhjah." Central to the Samer is the enchanting repetition of the word "Dhahyah" accompanied by rhythmic clapping, creating a sense of sacred unity.

The structure of the Samer becomes evident as it unfolds. Men stand in a straight line, and as the melodious chants reach their peak, their voices rise in unison, proclaiming "Dhahya" while bending their knees in a mesmerizing rhythm.

In response, the two ends of the straight line begin to turn, gracefully converging, creating an exquisite arc akin to a celestial half-circle.

The conductor and the guardianYet, the Samer yearns for further illumination.

A figure emerges, a conductor of movements, wielding a supple cane, crafted delicately from bamboo. He glides back and forth, a dance of balance between right and left, mirroring the fluidity of the men's formation.

His presence is in continuous motion, orchestrating the seamless harmony of the line.

A key figure emerges as the conductor of movements, holding a supple cane made from bamboo. Gliding back and forth, the conductor mirrors the fluidity of the men's formation, orchestrating a seamless harmony.

The "Hashi," the guardian, stands alongside, wielding her own can
e, ensuring harmony within the sacred circle. In the past, she wore a veil, symbolizing strength with her sword.

In this melodic tapestry, women find their voice, their presence revered in the realm of the Samer's embrace. Thiqleh Ja'afarah, wise with her 80 years, reminds us of their significance as they become essential partners in the dance of Samer and Dhahyah. Their voices soar, erupting into ululations, an homage to those celebrated through song.

Through the passage of time, the Samer remains a steadfast custodian of heritage, an enduring testament to the spirit of joy and unity cherished by Jordanians. Passed from generation to generation, this living art form continues to captivate, as its vibrant threads interweave the tapestry of Jordanian cultural expression.

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