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Transcripts count: 61
  1. Festival Customs

    Language
    English

    the herds to cattle which all go out to graze on that day or in mountain districts go out to the summer pastures or boolies as they are called. Bunches of mayflowers and primroses are strewn in the path of the cattle and are placed at every entrance to every outhouse and at all the doors and windows of the dwelling-house to welcome the good fairies and ward off of hags of ill-luck which pass around the countryside at dawn on May-day. Many a farmer used to sit out all night on May Eve, watching his well lest a begrudging neighbor should come at dawn and skim the will thus taking all the cream off the milk produced by the farmers herd that season and doubling the yield of cream on the milk produced by his own herd. At present there is great rivalry as to who will found at the well on May Day, where more than one farmer uses the same well, as it is believed that whoever takes water out of the well first on May Day will have all the

  2. May Eve Customs

    Language
    English

    the churn dash and people say they will never want butter the whole year round.

    In some places a May Queen is chosen and on May Day she is crowned with a wreath of flowers. Then, all the people dance round the May Pole singing songs and playing games. On May Day, some people do not put ashes or water out of their houses.

  3. Festival Customs

    Language
    English
    Collector
    Leonard Bovaird
    Occupation
    múinteoir

    in them The person who gets the ring was to be married first in his family. The person who got the button wast to be a maid or Bachelor. On Easter Sunday eggs are eaten. On May Day a large bunch of flowers is placed in front of the picture of the Blessed Virgin and renewed by fresh ones every day until May is out. On St Johns night the hill side is put on fire in his honour. On Assumption Day the people go to a holy place called Port Cille to pray This is in honour of St Columkill. On Easter Sunday is is a custom for old people to give eggs to children. Oranges are given to them also for Christmas. On May Day the children gather primroses and leave them on the doorstep or window-sill of the houses.

  4. Cooladawson

    Language
    English

    highe elevations of the grass lands and pour it out there to enrich the grazing and have it well forward for the cows and stores and sheep in the month of May.
    Referring back to the two half year hiring markets in Strabane each of two days' duration A great change has taken place there as instead of two days each half year the whole business is transacted on one day and that is always the fair-day too the 12th May and the 12th Nov. called "Old May Day and Old Hallow Day. New May Day and New Hallow Day are the 1st of May and 1st Nov respectively but the hiring periods or terms was neve changed with the New Style Calendar. Two other hiring days occur on the Candlemas and Lamas terms viz: 1st Feb. and 1st Aug new style. Servants hired or engaged on 1st Feb. are for the period ending the 11th may and on 1st Aug for the harvest period ending the 11th Nov.

  5. May Day Customs

    Language
    English
    Collector
    Sadie Mc Laughlin
    Informant
    Neil Mc Laughlin
    Age
    68

    in olden days all the old people on a May day always put up a pole of primroses and sagans and that pole was called a May pole, and they always thought it was lucky. From as far back as the old people can remember to this day they always put up that pole on the first day of May.

    They always said the cuckoo laid her egg in that nest and when she laid it she always took it away to some other nest belonging to some other bird and she hatched it there. All the people throw "sagans" at the door of every house to bring luck to every beast they have and to bring luck to themselves also, but no one can tell me why this is done at May day.

  6. Easter Sunday, May Day

    Language
    English
    Collector
    Bridie Doherty
    Informant
    (name not given)

    EASTER SUNDAY:-

    The old people say that Easter got its name because of the numbers of eggs which were eaten by the people on that day. The old people would eat no eggs in Lent and they would not sell them as they would get a bad price for them so they kept them. On Easter Sunday they would have a terrible lot so they would eat them.

    MAY-DAY
    There are a lot of old stories told about "May Day". The people say that it is terrible unlucky to have the first smoke in a town on this morning. The old people say that any bread or meat which was made before May Day shouldl not be eaten that day because the fairies stole the real thing and left in its place a piece of turf or clay of the same shape. The fairies are said to go about that morning trying to do all the harm they can.
    Bridie Doherty
    Cloughfin
    Clonmany
    Got from my father

  7. (no title)

    It was a custom on the first of May to gather May flowers and spread them at the door or window of the house on the evening before May Day...

    Language
    English
    Collector
    Danny Breslin
    Informant
    Mr P. Loughlin

    at the door or window of the house on the evening before May Day. The Mayflower is a big yellow flower that grows in marshes. This was done to prevent evil spirits from coming into the house.

  8. Festival Customs

    Language
    English
    Collector
    Florence Anderson

    (1) May Day

    May Day is the 1st May. It is also looked on as the first day of summer. On that day some people put May flowers in their windows and sometimes on their window sills and doors. This is a very old custom which is supposed to keep away fairy people and witches.
    (2) Christmas
    The “mummers” are bands of men or boys who go out through the district every year before Christmas collecting money. They dress up by putting on white clothes and sometimes big hats. They put coloured ribbons on their hats. Sometimes they put on false faces. If people let them into their homes they sing funny songs and recite. With the money they collect they have a dance after Christmas and anyone who gives them

  9. May Day Customs

    Language
    English
    Collector
    Anna Kelly

    On May Day a great many old customs are practised. Flowers are gathered on May Eve before sun-set, and a May pole is made in the midden. It is decorated with various kinds of flowers

  10. Festival Customs - May Day

    Language
    English
    Informant
    P. Mc Closkey

    The first of May is called May Day or (Lá Bealtaine). On the eve of this feast the children gather may-flowers and place them on the window sills of the houses. These flowers only grow in very wet places and they are mostly found in water, or among brambles. On this day the children gather together and select a May-lady. Then the[y] dress the may-lady in white and march from place to place shouting and cheering with joy. Sometimes they go from house to house playing music and gathering money

  11. Festival Customs

    Language
    English
    Collector
    Tommy Johnstone
    Age
    13

    There are many festivals held throughout Ireland, but the principals ones are, New Year's Eve, New Year's Day, Ash Wednesday, St Patrick's Day, Good Friday, Easter Sunday, May Day and Lammas Day, Hallowe'en and Christmas.
    On St Patrick's Day the people wear shamrocks in their breast. Some men get drunk on St Patrick's Day and they called that "drowning their Shamrock". We eat eggs at Easter because they are plentiful.

  12. May Day Customs

    Language
    English
    Collector
    Anna Kelly

    A May altar is made on May Day and a statue of the Blessed Virgin is put on the shelf with the flowers.
    On May Eve flowers are scattered at every out-house door. It is said that the Blessed Virgin walks about and lifts the flowers. In the morning the flowers are away.

  13. Feasts of the Year

    Language
    English
    Collector
    Emma Neely
    Informant
    Mr William Neely
    Age
    19

    The people do not work on good Friday. They keep it as a holiday.
    Easter Sunday is the day that Jesus rose from the dead and Easter Sunday keeps us in remembrance of that. The people eat eggs on Easter Sunday.
    Whit Monday is another holiday and the people do not work. The schools are all closed.
    May Day is on the first day of May.
    Lady Day is on the 15 th of August and the catholics keep it as a holiday.
    Old May day is on the nineth of May.
    Halloween day is on the last day of October and the people eat nuts, and apples, and at night the young people leave cabbages at the door-step, and they throw ones into the kitchen. That is the custom about here.
    Christmas Eve night is the night that the children hang up their stockings for Santa Claus. It is on the 24 th of December.
    Christmas day is on the 25 th of December and the people do not work. They go hunting for rabbits and hares and game.
    New year's eve is on the last day of December and it is the day before New year's day.

  14. Care of Farm Animals

    Language
    English
    Collector
    Mary Mc Cafferty
    Informant
    Miss K. Mc Cafferty

    Is called a stable. The farmers sell the pigs and gets [sic] money for them. The pighouse is called a sty. The sheep are kept for their wool. The sheep graze on the hillside and on the mountains. The famer keeps two kinds of sheep.
    Long ago when people were milking the cows they used to sing and this made the cows give more milk. Some people still sing.
    Long ago people used to rise early on May Day and get a broom and wet the broom with dew. Then hit each cow three times with the broom. This they said brings lock on the stock.

  15. Lore of Certain Days

    Language
    English
    Collector
    Elva Patton
    Informant
    Thomas Patton

    It would not be lucky to sow your corn after the 20th April. The farmers think themselves lucky if they have theirs in before the cuckoo rings. The old cow kicked up her heels and said she would live another year when she got March over her and March borrowed three days from April and skinned her.
    If a man was going to the fair with cattle and met a woman with red hair he would turn back. The farmers count themselves lucky if they half their provisions on Candlemas Day.
    On May Day the children gather May flowers and spread them on the window sill. If they do this the fairies are supposed not to some near the houses in which the May flowers are.

  16. Lore of Certain Days

    Language
    English
    Collector
    May Armstrong
    Informant
    William Armstrong

    If any person is born on the 13th it is also unlucky. The farmer tries to have his corn sown before the cuckoo comes because he believes that cuckoo corn is no good. Some farmers would not set any potatoes after May Day because they believe that the potatoes would rot in the ground.
    Some women would not set a hen to hatch out eggs in the month of May because may corn chickens are delicate chickens.
    It is considered unlucky if any person runs to be in time for a train because it is believed that an accident will happen to the person before he reached his destination.

  17. Land and Landlordism

    Language
    English

    days on the first of May and first of November “May day and Halday”. I have heard some of the older men relate how they had to behave when paying the rent. Before the[y] entered from the road into the sacred precinct of the landlord’s office they had to remove their headgear. If this was not done there was no rent taken from them that day. If they were “fortunate enough” to have their rents received they were so jubilant that they celebrated their security of tenure for six months more by getting drunk.
    Some times however the rent was not taken, perhaps some grabbing neighbour laid in a tale that so & so would not be able to pay the rent and did so himself and got his neighbour’s [?]. This was a rare happening in this area but not unknown.
    There were no written notices for rent in those days. Instead the bailiff made a turas of the hill-tops as warned the tenants of their obligations by

  18. Festival Customs

    Language
    English
    Collector
    Peggy Lee
    Informant
    Mrs Rogers

    young children gather rushes, and in the night-time, the old people teach them how to make crosses, then they are blessed on Saint Brigids Day. In the Country houses they hang the crosses among the beams in the ceiling, in the town places they hang them behind pictures on the walls.

    May Day.
    On that day they go out and gather May flowers and strew them on every doorstep and window sill, because people believe that it keeps the fairies away and if the flowers are not there the fairies will come to the house and carry away one of the family.

  19. Emblems and Objects of Value

    Language
    English
    Collector
    Ernest Crawford
    Informant
    Mr B. Crawford
    Age
    59

    There are no crosses in this district but there is a stone in the shape of a chair it is called St Brigid’s chair [sic] There is a story about a boy who was lost for three days. It was supposed that the fairies had taken him and he was found sitting in St Brigid’s chair on the shores of Lough Derg.

    Holly is hung up in the house at Christmas. There are May flowers put on the window sill on May day to bring luck. People wear palm on Palm Sunday. Some people go to certain wells for luck or to cure their disease if they are ill. They leave a piece of cloth at the well and tie it to a bush. There is a well of this kind in Cullion but people have not been to it for a very long time.