A speckled thrush upon a bush pours forth her matin hymn A new-born hope has in her woke; with her 'tis not a whim. Some wondrous thrills her bosom fills - what can she do but sing When back again o'er wood and plain has come the joyful Spring. Tomás Ó Muircheartaigh holding a bird. … Continue reading The Joyful Spring
In Irish folk tradition, the calendar is principally split into ‘Quarter Days’, so called as they divide the year into each of its four seasons of autumn (Lammas / Lúnasa), winter (Halloween / Samhain), spring (St. Brigid’s Day / Imbolc), and of course summer (May Day / Bealtaine), which falls on the 1st of May. In marking the transition … Continue reading Welcome, noble summer!
This time last year our guest blogger Dr Elva Johnston looked at St Brigid's family history, her life in Ireland and her highly respected standing amongst the early Irish Church. This year the National Folklore Collection rummage in their archives and.....well read on to find out more! In Irish folk tradition, the calendar is principally … Continue reading Ireland’s Second Saint
Traditionally, February marked the transition from winter to spring in Ireland, icy rain watering green shoots. For the early medieval Irish, the month started with Imbolc, one of the quarter-days on which the calendar turned, the others being May 1st (Beltene), August 1st (Lugnasad) and November 1st (Samain). Above all, February 1st was the festival … Continue reading St Brigit of Kildare: Patron of the Powerless
The last evening of October, Halloween, is linked with the spirits and the dead. In Christian calendars the next day is the Feast of All Saints, followed by the Feast of All Souls. As the days shorten these echoes of the dead seem appropriate. The passage from life to death and beyond holds a deep … Continue reading A Season for Saints and the Supernatural