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- 204Local SuperstitionsThe people of this district long ago had great superstitions about the first day of May. Some people used to hang up quickenberry boughs over the cow house door and over the dwelling house door to protect their cattle for the year from evil spirits and to prevent other people from taking the butter.
Every morning as the cows came out in the door, someone would make the sign of the cross on their foreheads with the quickenberry. The quickenberry is also called mountain ash.
Salt, fire or milk were never given on May 1st and this custom is still kept in a few houses in the district. Mrs Wickham of Knockmarshal Enniscorthy who is over 70 years of age still adheres to it. Even the working men, who were in the habit of getting their bottle of milk every evening after work, had to go away empty handed on that evening.
Another custom was called "skimming the well." The person who got out of bed early or had the well skimmed with a saucer before sunrise took the farmer's "profit".
Information received from
Mr James Dunne
Knockmore, Caime, Enniscorthy.
Aged about 50 YearsTranscribed by a member of our volunteer transcription project.