A Conversation for The Muses' Campfire

Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 1

Jeremy (trying to find his way back to dinner)

Hi everybody, and welcome to the Midsummer Night's Celebration here at the Campfire.

You are all invited to show us your home country's rites and customs for celebrating Midsummer Night. Take it as granted that everything you need will be here in time. Midsummer Night is going to be on Thursday, 21 June 2001, so please invite all your friends.

Jeremy, Stoker of the Campfire


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 2

Ottox

* goes to invite Titania, the Fairy Queen of my Midsummer Night's Dream smiley - fairy *


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 3

Jeremy (trying to find his way back to dinner)

Thanks Ottox, I knew I could count on you! smiley - ok


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 4

Galaxy Babe - eclectic editor

I'm here too!
smiley - smoochOttox
smiley - smoochJeremy

Where's Mina?smiley - erm


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 5

Apollo

I don't have any rites or festivities to share, but I'll be more than happy to join in the fun!

smiley - magic --Apollo


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 6

Afgncaap5

Hmmm, I've never celebrated midsummer before. What is it again? The Equinox, or the....the other one. I can always remember the Equinox, but I can't remember that other term. I think it's an Equinox, anyway.


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 7

Titania (gone for lunch)

*floating in, in her usual vague, elf-like manner, lured here by the Herald of Heaven*

Wow - I need to dust off some of my knowledges of Midsummer and Summer Solstice - pardon me if I appear a bit absent-minded...


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 8

Dragonfly. "A poet can survive everything but a misprint"-- Oscar Wilde

...it's the shortest night of the year... YEEHAH!!!

smiley - winkeye

In America, I think we just sit around and watch summer tv reruns... smiley - winkeye


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 9

Titania (gone for lunch)

Well, for one thing, it's probably the only holiday that the church didn't manage to invent a Christian excuse for (just look at what they did to midwinter - manipulated the date of birth for Jesus just to obliterate the heathen rituals)...

...and I'm sorry if this seems as an attach on Christian holidays, that is not the intention, it's just that the church tried to make people forget about the old reasons for celebrating certain times of the year by 'inventing' new ones...


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 10

Titania (gone for lunch)

...enough ranting... here are a couple of entries I found, that might be interesting for this special occassion:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/h2g2/guide/A575769
...not edited, but pretty amusing, if you ask me, about Midsummer celebrations in Sweden...

http://www.bbc.co.uk/h2g2/guide/A413597
...an edited entry about Summer Solstice


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 11

Dragonfly. "A poet can survive everything but a misprint"-- Oscar Wilde

YAY!!!


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 12

Titania (gone for lunch)

OK, so how about some story telling?

Everyone - feel free to jump in at any point!

'The summer solstice is the actual day on which the sun climbs to its highest point in the sky. This was originally the day on which people celebrated midsummer. There is still a famous summer solstice celebration at Stonehenge, the ancient stone circle on Salisbury Plain in Wiltshire. On the night before midsummer, a group of white-robed Druids gather at Stonehenge to watch the sun rising. As it comes up, the sun rises exactly over the Heel Stone, one of the stones that lies outside the main circle at Stonehenge.'

And did you know that the temple of Abu Simbel in southern Egypt was originally built so that the sun would reach the very inner part of the temple only twice a year - on summer and winter solstice? I think that they tried to preserve that angle when the entire temple was moved because of the construction of the Assuan dam...


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 13

Titania (gone for lunch)

'Traditions in Scandinavia include girls collecting seven to nine different wildflowers and placing them under their pillows in hopes of dreaming of their future loves...'

...and preferrably at cross roads...


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 14

Titania (gone for lunch)

'Long ago it (midsummer) was a pagan holiday to make the gods give rich harvests.'


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 15

Titania (gone for lunch)

'Midsummer Eve is also known as Herb Evening. This is the most potent night (and midnight the most potent time) for gathering magical herbs, particularly St John's wort, vervain, mugwort, mistletoe, ivy and fern seed. In some legends, a special plant, which is guarded by demons, flowers only on this one night a year. Successfully picking it gives one magical powers, like being able to understand the language of the trees.

This is also a time for lovers. An old Swedish proverb says "Midsummer Night is not long but it sets many cradles rocking." According to Dorothy Gladys Spicer in The Book of Festivals, Irish girls drop melted lead into water and interpret the shapes it makes. In Spain, girls do the same with eggs. In Poland, they combine three of the symbols of the holiday for a divination. Girls make a wreath of wild flowers, put a candle in the middle, set it adrift on the river and tell the future by observing its fate.'


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 16

Titania (gone for lunch)

*wraps blanket closer around her, as the night grows chillier*


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 17

Ottox

I'll warm you! smiley - winkeye


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 18

Titania (gone for lunch)

Thank you, Ottox...

*relaxes in the arms of Ottox, blanket wrapped around both of them*

But what are you doing here at this time of night - the sun is already starting to rise! It's 3 am!


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 19

Ottox

* while holding her in his arms, Ottox tells Titania that she's some hundred kilometers further to the north than him, and that it's still almost dark here smiley - winkeye *


Midsummer Night at the Campfire

Post 20

Titania (gone for lunch)

Well, not here, it ain't! Oh drat, does this mean I'll have to go to bed soon?


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