Every fall, students of Scotland's oldest university engage in what can only be described as one of the best, craziest and most ridiculous university traditions ever: Raisin weekend.
Dressed in funky clothes, new students gathered on the lawns of St. Andrews in Fife, Scotland, on Monday and indulged in a massive foam party.
@dr_fionac embedded via Twitter
— Fiona C (@dr_fionac) October 20, 2014
The VisitStAndrews site describes the history behind the weekend:
The Museum of the University of St Andrews has a board dedicated to the earlier, more sedate traditions of the Raisin weekend: First-year students (called ‘bejants’ and ‘bejantines’) would be assigned academic ‘parents’ – older students – to initiate and orientate them into the ways of the university and town. Once the bejants and bejantines had been in St Andrews for a few months, they would thank their ‘parents’ for their help by giving them the gift of a pound of raisins. Students who did not repay their parents in this way were often ‘punished’ by older students. To avoid mistakenly throwing a ‘good’ student into one of the town fountains, it became customary for parents receiving their pound of raisins to write out a receipt in Latin for their academic child. Then, whenever challenged, the bejant or bejantine could produce their raisin receipt to avoid being drenched.
ekaterina_zueva embedded via InstagramLoading
#raisin2014 #foamfight thank you academic mom for 🎃pumpkin costumes🎃 The craziest and funniest St.Andrews tradition
The ritual has changed much since its inception. Nowadays, new students give their "parents" a bottle of wine instead of raisins and bond with them over the weekend. On Monday, "children" parade through the town in embarrassing outfits created by their "moms." The parade ends in the famous foam fights.
barrielyell embedded via InstagramLoading
Raisin Monday! #raisin2014 #gardengnome #HarryPotter #grapes #panda #StAndrews photo credz to @hanmacd for being crazy enough to take her phone in there