Thursday, September 17, 2009

Quotes: Primitive Beliefs (23).

Bonfires and Yule Logs.

Primitive practice 696 "All over Europe the peasants have been accustomed from time immemorial to kindle bonfires on certain days of the year, and to dance round or leap over them." Frazer, The New Golden Bough.

Primitive practice 697 "…[fires] consisted of pyramids of sticks and faggots, which had been collected some days earlier by young folks going from door to door." Frazer, The New Golden Bough.

Primitive practice 701 "On the first Sunday in Lent, bonfires are lit, round which the young people dance and sing old songs; the children, in one very popular song, demand fritters, and the quaint refrain runs thus: 'If my mother does not give me fritters, I shall set fire to her petticoats.' ” Frazer, The New Golden Bough.

Primitive practice 712 "…the girls throw the wreaths across the flames to the men, and woe to the awkward swain who fails to catch the wreath thrown him by his sweetheart." Frazer, The New Golden Bough.

Primitive practice 722 "…the custom of the Yule log, clog or block, as it was variously called in England…was only the winter counterpart of the Midsummer bonfire, kindled within doors instead of the open air on account of the cold and inclement weather of the season…lent it the character of a private or domestic festivity, which contrasts strongly with the publicity of the summer celebration, at which the people gathered on some open space or conspicuous height, kindled a huge bonfire in common, and danced and made merry round it together." Frazer, The New Golden Bough.

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