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Solmonath Disting Rites and Sedes

Solmonath also called Éowomeoluc (an Anglo-Saxon word either based on the Celtic Imbolc or vice versa) was one of the tides most persecuted by the Christian church. Of its rites, only the blessing of the plow was allowed to continue along with the observation of the ground hog’s habitual looking for his shadow. According to the Heimskringla, “In Svithjod it was the old custom, as long as Heathenism prevailed, that the chief sacrifice took place in Goe month at Upsala.” The Old Scandanavian month of Goe falls in our month of February. These sacrifices were offered frith ok sigr, for frith and victory. Bede mentions Solmonath as the time when the pagan Anglo-Saxons gave cakes to their Gods.

Solmonath was the time when the ewes first began giving birth to their lambs, and ewe milk was thus available. It was also when the thaw began and ground could first be broken for the spring planting. Tied to the first tilling of the year, were the various plow rites. It was possibly this time of year when the goddess Nerthus was taken around to villages, as this is when plows were decorated and taken from village to village in medieval England. Drawing on the Aecer-Bót and the activities of the medieval celebrations, these plow processions may have taken the following form:

Read the original article at: Ealdriht

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