ADF Dedicant Path: First High Day Essay (Summer Cross-quarter)

The August Cross-quarter is known as either Lughnasadh or Lammas in neopagan circles and is celebrated on or around August 1st.

Although Lammas and Lughnasadh fall on or around the same date, they are not, according to Alaric Albertsson, necessarily related” (169). Lughnasadh refers to the celtic god, Lugh (who is not a fertility god) and is, among other things Lugh-related, “a funeral festival commemorating the death of Tailtiu, the mother of […] Lugh” (Albertsson, 169). Lammas, on the other hand is associated with the god Ing Fréa, a harvest god, and is very much a harvest festival. Nevertheless, blending of the two traditions has occurred over time, such as with the association of the term “first fruits” with Lughnasadh, despite, according to Albertsson, the expression’s Anglo Saxon origins. Today, both Lammas and Lughnasadh are associated more or less equally with the first harvest.

Common traditions that prevail today include baking the season’s first loaf of bread and making corn (or grain) husk dollies. Corn husk dollies were traditionally made from the last sheaf of the the harvest in order to preserve the spirit of the grain. They would be saved until the next planting season, whereupon they were plowed into the soil with the new grain seeds. Today, it is most common to use them simply to adorn an altar.

Works Cited:

Albertsson, Alaric. Travels through Middle Earth: The Path of a Saxon Pagan. Woodbury, MN: Llewellyn Publications, 2009.   Print.

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Posted on July 19, 2015, in ADF Dedicant Path and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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