School: Wilkinstown (roll number 1917)

Wilkinstown, Co. Meath
Máire Ní Failcheallaigh

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Important Days and Their Customs - New Year's Day

Archival Reference

The Schools’ Collection, Volume 0711, Page 050

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People say that you should not throw out anything on this day or you will have to throw out everything before the year is ended.

St Stephen's Day
It is a custom for wren-boys to go round to the houses singing and dancing and the people give them money. They are called "wren-boys" because long ago they used to kill a wren and put it in a holly-bush and bring it round to the houses with them but they do not bring the wren with them now. When the people would not give them any money they used to say "Give us a penny or we'll bury the wren." It was supposed that this would bring bad luck to the people.

Patricia Reilly
Demailestown, Co. Meath