Halloween; guising; harvest customs, including straw dogs; p...

Title - Halloween; guising; harvest customs, including straw dogs; p...
Contributors - Laura Malcolmson
Reporters - Alan J. Bruford

Summary - Halloween; guising; harvest customs, including straw dogs; profit-taking.

Halloween was celebrated with tricks like throwing kale or neeps [turnips] down chimneys. Halloween was similar to the modern celebration in many respects but Whalsay was the only place where guising took place on that night. Guising generally took place at Christmas and New Year, and masked people went around the houses with a fiddle and a bottle. Masks were home-made or bought and the guisers put on false voices.

Harvest was supposed to be finished by Halloween, but anyone who was late would have a tattie [potato] dog made of straw put on their chimney, where it was regarded as a mark of shame. It was called the tattie dog as potatoes were the last crop to be harvested. A corn sheaf was often left in the field to help ensure that more corn would grow again. Sometimes people would try to take the luck of a field by stealing a sheaf from it.

Track Duration (h:m:s) - 00:06:02
Date Recorded - 1970.09.16
Language - English, Scots
Genre - Information
Collection - School of Scottish Studies

Track ID - 101976
Original Tape ID - SA1970.235
Original Track ID - SA1970.235
Audio Quality - Good
Audio Format - R2R

Item Location:
  County - Shetland
  Parish - Dunrossness
  Island - Shetland Mainland

Item Notes -

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