Lammas is an ancient festival celebrating the first harvest and the reaping of grain. It is a cross-quarter holiday halfway between the Summer Solstice (Litha) and the Autumnal Equinox (Mabon). In the northern hemisphere, Lammas takes place around August 1.
The wheat had run low before Lammas, and this new harvest of wheat and other crops and fruits began a season of plenty, thus there was a spirit of celebration and thanksgiving..
The Wickerman film at Summersisle famously presents a certain view of this pagan festival. Sir James Frazer (incorrectly according to Ronald Hutton) cites John Barleycorn In The Golden Bough as proof of a Pagan cult in England that worshiped a god of vegetation, sacrificed to bring fertility to the fields.
Some see in this tradition echoes of human sacrifice as portrayed in The Wickerman film (1973), but that is not really what this time is about.
Whilst there was a Celtic ritual of dressing the last sheaf of corn to be harvested in fine clothes, or weaving it into a wicker-like man or woman, it was believed that the Sun 's spirit was trapped in the grain and needed to be set free by fire, so the effigy was burned. This tradition is thought by many to have been the origin of the misconception that Druids made human sacrifices, along with Julius Caesar's politically motivated accounts.
More details at my Blog The Dance Of Life here ( http://bit.ly/H8HOOA
Grateful thanks to The Bard of Ely for permission to use his song I AM;
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Lammas poem c. + narrated by The Bard of Ely.
Welsh Translation by Gareth Owen
Rheolwr y Theatr / Theatre Manager, Theatr y Pafiliwn / Pavilion Theatre, Rhyl.
Gaia, co Enchantress Sao,
Hinterland Orkney co Tim Mersereau
Woodhenge, Madrigal co Julius Forwzy of The Druids of the Second Realm
As The Bard of Ely, Celestial Elf
Rowan Morrison, Sienna Panthar,
The Sergeant, rocketman Foxdale
The Fox Headed Pagan, Wicked2712 Bearsfoot
Many thanks to Laufey Markstein of Trident for providing;
Wicker Man, Apple Barrels-Crates, Hay Stack, Grains and Seeds sacks, Corn Rack, Druids Belt.
and to Fanda Ryba for the BwO bagpipes
Filmed on SecondLife via Phoenix 188.8.131.528,
On Windows XP using Fraps and Serif MoviePlus X3.
Casting Coordinator Sienna Panthar,
Conceived, Directed and Produced by Celestial Elf 2011