Posts and podcasts

Whitsuntide – 1889

The Holiday Customs of Ireland – James Mooney

Tawnagh tides Photo: EO'D

Tawnagh tides
Photo: EO’D

Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society Vol. 26 No. 130 (July – December, 1889)

Whitsunday, in Gaelic called Cingcis, is a moveable festival occurring generally about the end of May or the beginning of June, and deserves notice on account of the mysterious fatality connected with it, as well as with the following Monday and Tuesday. It is an unlucky season, and should a man born on any one of these three days ever throw a stone it will inevitably kill or cripple someone. No water must be sold during the same period, and for this reason no clothes are washed from Saturday until Thursday, nor are any sheep washed for shearing. Neither must one start on a journey or begin any important work, but, above all, no one must go near the water, either for bathing or boating, or even to cross a stream, for at this season one may be drowned in a cup of water. There are ancient legends to prove the truth of this belief, and every old woman can tell of instances within her own knowledge where a neglect of these precautions has resulted fatally. Death is not inevitable, however, for only one hour of all this time is fatal, but as no one may know which is the hour, or even on which of the three days it occurs, the only way to avoid the evil consequences is to observe the prohibition until the period has terminated. According to Lady Wilde, the fairies are also to be feared at this season, so that holy water must be sprinkled about the house to keep them away, and at this time also the water spirits come up out of the sea to hold their revels on the shore, and the water horse rises from the lough to graze at midnight in the green pastures upon its banks. A dance was formerly held also on Whitsunday.

Advertisements

About The Burren and Beyond

Archaeologist

Discussion

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Calendar

May 2016
M T W T F S S
« Apr   Jun »
 1
2345678
9101112131415
16171819202122
23242526272829
3031  

Categories

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 244 other followers

Archives

Blog Stats

  • 25,615 hits

Posts

May 2016
M T W T F S S
« Apr   Jun »
 1
2345678
9101112131415
16171819202122
23242526272829
3031  
%d bloggers like this: