n. A dish made of sweetened boiled wheat, optionally mixed with nuts and spices, and used in Eastern Orthodox rituals to commemorate the dead.
Koliva, kollyva, kollyba or Colivă ( Greek: ; Serbian: (also interchangeably called ); Romanian: ; Bulgarian: , kolivo; Georgian: (also interchangeably called and ); Ukrainian: , kolyvo), is boiled wheat which is used liturgically in the Eastern Orthodox Churches.
This ritual food most likely was used even before Christianity since the ingredients used have symbolic value relating to the Greek pantheon, though not to Christian iconography. In the Eastern Churches, koliva is blessed during the memorial Divine Liturgy performed at various intervals after a death; at funerals and during the mnemosyna, i.e. the Orthodox Memorial services. It may also be used on the first Friday of the Great Lent, at Slavas, or at mnemosyna in the Christmas meal. In some countries, though not in Greece, it is consumed on non-religious occasions as well.
A similar food item is widely popular in Lebanon where it is known as snuniye and, more commonly, as berbara as it is prepared for Saint Barbara's day, December 4, which is celebrated with Halloween-like festivities.