Master Mummers - Local Notes and Queries: Why New Year\'s Day is at the Beginning of January (Nottinghamshire Guardian (1897a))

Nottinghamshire Guardian (1897a)


Source:

[Anon.] (Auth.)
*LOCAL NOTES AND QUERIES: WHY NEW YEAR'S DAY IS AT THE BEGINNING OF JANUARY [Mummers in Scotland]
*Nottinghamshire Guardian, 2nd Jan.1897

Discussion of the relationship between the start of the new year and the winter solstice. The article ends as follows:

"Amongst the Romans it was Saturnalia, when, for a period varying from three to seven days, the whole population surrendered themselves to feasting and merriment. One day masters and slaves changed places, the latter sitting at meat and the former attending upon them. The Lord of Misrule was anticipated by the election of the king of the feast, who directed the revelries according to his own caprice and the rule of 'follow my leader.' With a curious analogy to the practice described in the late Dr. Norman Macleod's chapter in 'New Year's Day in a Highland Parish', the mummers used to dress themselves up in the skins of various beasts. But the connection of the Saturnalia with sun worship is too obvious and too well established to need enlargement."

The chapter cited appears to be Norman Macleod "Reminiscences of a Highland Parish", London: Strahan & Co, 1871, pp.337-355

Index Terms:

Locations: Highlands, Scotland
Years: *Publ. 1897
Subjects: Animal Disguise; New Year's Day; Mummers; Macleod,N. (1871); Saturnalia; Lord of Misrule
Archives: TDRG Archive, Ref. TD00147;
Local Notes & Queries Scrapbook, Vol.9, p.123

* indicates data that has not yet been validated against the original source and/or has yet to be completely indexed.


Last Updated Jun 2005 by Idwal Jones.