stjäler gulnat blad från linden,
rusar snabbare än hinden
över slätten ini staden studsande mot tak och väggar
fram mot Huset.
glammar man i Sångar-Salen,
höjer man med klang pokalen
lyssnar man till talen
från Kurator till Inspektor
från Inspektor till Nationen
från Nationen till dess Hembygd
från en blåögd själ till kvinnan…
Börjar balen i Lilla salen.
That’s what it said in the invitation to Blekingska Nation’s autumn party 1951. A lot is still the same, even some 60 years later, but the road here has been long and winding.
Blekingska Nation has a long and rich party tradition. As early as the 1850’s blekingar gathered for a ball in what was then the newly built Akademiska Föreningen-fort. Blekingar were not slow to use the new premises for festive assembly. The nations membership-numbers and activities have since the 1850’s varied greatly, but the nation parties have always been popular and has given a lot of members of the nation a lot of happy memories over the years. Among the recurrent events was the autumn party, the nation’s own biggest party.
At the autumn party of 1947 the nation celebrated its 250th jubilee, and the writee Harry Martinsson from Jämshög in Blekinge was installed as an honorary member. This is said to be the first time Martinsson wore a dress suit, a garment he would later have to wear all the more often as he in 1949 was elected in to Svenska Akademin and was awarded the Nobel prize in litterature.
Since when has it been called Höstblotet? The name ’Höstblotet’ seems to be closely connected to the order of Heruls, which was instituted at the nation in 1961. The order of Heruls saw themselves as the spiritual (and possibly genetic) heirs to the warring people Heruler, who settled in Blekinge around 550 a.d, after succesfully acted as an auxiliary squad for the east-roman empire, among other things. The Heruls stood out as extraordinarily savage and barbarian for their tradition of sacrificing (or ”blota”) various living beings to please their gods. The nations autumn party merged with the order of the Heruls festivities and thus was the Höstblot born.
The order of the Heruls’ cadastre reaches all the way to 1971, when the order was put to rest. Balls and dress suits were no longer in fashion in the Lund of the 1970’s, and especially not at Blekingska nation. The end of the 1970’s saw the nation in deep economic crisis. Total shutdown threatened the nation, and also the hope of ever reviving the party traditions. In 1982 the immediate danger was over and Blekingska nation could once again celebrate Höstblot at Akademiska Föreningen, and there install Jan-Öjvind Swahn as inspector.
Today, the Höstblot is Blekingska nations by far largest recurring event and is attended by both young and old blekingar, as well as guests from near and far. The long blekingska tradition of arranging an autumn party withstands, and the sacrifice we now make as attendees consists of the wellbeing of the day after, with the hope of a wonderful evening of partying. The old herul-gods should be pleased!