Scottish Harvest Customs

September 18, 2015 at 1:30 am Leave a comment

While in Ireland the harvest is celebrated at Lunasa, harvest customs come later in Scotland.

Historical Info from Chronicle of Celtic Folk Customs by Brian Day

On the 14th or the 21st- the Autumnal Equinox- Nutting Day is observed- the day “the Devil goes a-nutting” Young people gather nuts, some avoid doing so lest the Devil abduct them! Nuts are associated with fertility so some girls avoid gathering them so as not to get pregnant.  It is also the end of the blackberry picking season- it’s believed that when the archangel Michael kicked the Devil out of heaven, he landed in bramble bush. Mold found on blackberries is his spit.

The main September harvest celebration is on the 28th- Michaelmas Eve- bonfires are lit, roast lamb is eaten. In Scotland Michael is the patron of fishermen and horsemen. Struan Micheil is traditionally made and eaten- a cake made of sheep’s milk, eggs, butter and grain, decorated with a cross. A piece is thrown on the fire to placate the Devil.

the 29th- Michaelmas Day

Irish customs for Michaelmas come from the English- giving geese as gifts, even to the poor, plucking their down for pillows, apple picking, cider-making and hunting season begins and fishing ends.

In Scotland, wild carrots are dug up and given as gifts. Another tradition is to visit the graves of relatives on horseback- this is called circuiting. Horse-racing and other athletic events take place.
Articles

La Fheill Michaeil by Tairis

Celebrating La Fheill Michaeil by Tairis

Associated Deities & Myths

Lugh (equated with St Michael)

Macha- horse-racing association

Rituals

Mid-Autumn Rite by Ozark Pagan Mamma

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Entry filed under: Celtic/Druid, Holidays. Tags: , , .

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