British Popular Customs Present And Past - online book

A calendar of the traditional customs, practices & rituals of the British Isles.

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S98                                      HALLOW EVE,                           [OCT. 31.
swain whose name it bore was instantly discarded as being unfaithful. It is to this custom that Gay has thus alluded:
" See from the core two kernels now I take, This on my cheek for Lubberkin is worn, And Booby Clod on t'other side is borne; But Booby Clod soon falls upon the ground, A certain token that his love's unsound; While Lubberkin sticks firmly to the last; Oh ! were his lips to mine but joined so fast."
Jour, of Arch. Assoc. 1853, vol. iii. p. 286.
At Ripon, the women make a cake for every one in the family, whence this eve is by them called cake-night.Gent. Mag. 1790, vol. lx. p. 719.
In North Wales there is a custom upon All Saints' Eve of making a great fire called Coel Goet% when every family for about an hour in the night, makes a great bonfire in the most conspicuous place near the house, and when the fire is almost extinguished every one throws a white stone into the ashes, having first marked it; then having said their prayers turning round the fire, they go to bed. In the morning, as soon as they are up, they come and search out the stones, and if any one of them is found wanting they have a notion that the person who threw it in will die before he sees another All Saints' Eve.—Pennant MS., quoted by Brand, Pop. Antiq. 1849, vol. i. p. 389.
In Owen's Account of the Bards, preserved in Sir R. Hoare's Itinerary of Archbishop Baldwin through Wales (vol. ii. p. 315), the following particulars are given in connection with the above custom:—The autumnal fire kindled in North Wales on the eve of the 1st of November is attended by many ceremonies, such as running through the fire and smoke, each casting a stone into the fire, and all running oft* at the conclusion, to escape from the black short-tailed sow ; then supping upon parsnips, nuts, and apples; catching at an apple suspended by a string, with the mouth alone, and
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