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In this episode of The Atlas Obscura Podcast, in honor of Lucia Day on December 13, we’re diving into the origins of a Swedish holiday tradition which evolved from sinister pagan lore to a celebration of light, warmth, and music.

Tune into SVT’s Lucia broadcast:

Our podcast is an audio guide to the world’s wondrous, awe-inspiring, strange places. In under 15 minutes, we’ll take you to an incredible site, and along the way you’ll meet some fascinating people and hear their stories. Join us daily, Monday through Thursday, to explore a new wonder with cofounder Dylan Thuras and a neighborhood of Atlas Obscura reporters.

Adèle Söderberg (1880-1915)/Public Domain