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School: Ruadhán

Ruan, Co. Clare
Seán Ó Liadhráin, Bríd Ní Dhíomáin

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Archival Reference

The Schools’ Collection, Volume 0613, Page 358

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People especially country people prefer to get married in Shrove, and long ago the biggest number of marriages used take place on Shrove Tuesday. The match - as it used to be called - was made by a "Spaker", and almost all marriages in a parish were made by this man. He used first introduce the match to the parents of the boy and girl, and when they had settled about the fortune to be given, a day was appointed for the boy and girl to meet, and if those liked each other, a day was appointed to "walk the land". There was a good deal of trickery carried on that day by the people who owned the land. They often put extra cattle on the land, and even made heaps of earth in the gardens letting on that they were heaps of potatoes thus enhancing the value of the farm. If the girl's people did not like the land & stock on that day the "match" was "broke", but if everything went all right a night was appointed for "picking the gander". This was done at the girl's house, the boy & his friends going there and having a good night, plenty to eat and drink, and a dance until morning. The wedding day was then appointed, and on that day there were celebrations at the house of the bride, and in

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