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Festivals in May

 
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Azjah
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2008 10:19 pm    Post subject: Festivals in May Reply with quote

May Day has marvelous customs and costumes, decorations and dances, and delectable green foods signal the change of season. Many Mayday rituals are remembrances of pagan attempts to force Spring to return to the world. Dancers stamp the ground to reawaken it, and shrill May hors, loud May whistles and tinkling May bells alert sleeping spirits of the fields and forests to the changing seasons. At the center of revelry is the Maypole. It is a tall, strong shaft, crowned with garlands of leaves and flowers and wound round with brightly colored ribbons. It resembles a giant tree. Near it, the Queen of the May is crowned. Around it, she leads circle dances. The Maypole contest games identify the strongest, tallest, swiftest, prettiest, bravest, smallest, loudest and best. The Mayday champions place small bells on the Maypole. Ringings and ceremonies encourage the Guardian of Trees to create abundance.

Maypoles can rise ninety feet high, and may remain standing throughout the year. Only on Mayday are they decorated with their flower crowns, ribbons and streamers.

Wreathes and hoops are placed indoors and are made of evergreen boughs, and announce the joyous season to all who see it. They are decorated with green ribbons and small bells, evenly spaced.

Wreathes and baldrics for May guests are required. Each guest wears a crown of green leaves with flowers pinned to the hair or attached to a well fitting skullcap. Another costume decoration is a green baldric. This is a long ribbon placed over the right shoulder to cross the chest and the back diagonally finally to tie at the left hip.

The Queen of May is introduced via fanfare and the Surveyor?s crowning of the Queen of May. She may be the prettiest, or the youngest or the tallest or the most honored guest. No matter how she is chosen, the queen must represent a particular quality in the superlative. Wearing a golden crown with a single gold leaf at her forehead, she announces the May games and awards prizes to the winners. Along with the usual fabulous feast entertainments, such as juggling and magic.

Spring green foods and Jack in the Green. The trenchers are delicately green parsley bread slices. On these, green salads with lettuce, spinach, peas, endive, fennel and green gage plum are served, followed by a light green apple cider. A Mayday favorite is fruited beef and green peppermint rice. A delectable desert is Jack in the Green. Each guest is served a large gingerbread man cookie called Jack in the Green. On his head is a May wreath of green sprinkles or bright green lime icing.

Maying round the Maypole follows, it is a dance where guests join hands in a circle around the Maypole, moving clockwise, they circle it, dancing, stamping and acting a set of ancient May rituals.

Other games include Backgammon, Chess, Billiards, Nine Man?s Morris
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Azjah Telyria Danaan PhD
Marchioness von Triberg
Baroness von Drachen Walde
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