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- Festival Customs.
10 - 1 - 39.
St. Stephen's Day.
The children of each village form one group and dress themselves in old tattered clothing their faces are covered by curtains or holed paper sometimes the faces are blackened. They usually have one who can play a melodion or mouth organ. They march from house to house. Each one carries a stout stick with a rag tied on top of it, this is kept muddied. If the householder fails to give them money they daub the walls and doors with mud, if there are no men about or if they're not afraid of the dog. The song sung is
"The wren, the wren, the King of all birds
St. Stephen's day was caught in the furze
We chased her up we chased her down
Till one of the wren boys knocked her down
All silver an' no brass. Give up the price of one half glass."
Sometime the money is divided equally among the several members of the group. Sometime a football is purchased. It often happens that when rival gangs meet the weaker is robbed.(continues on next page)Transcribed by a member of our volunteer transcription project.