Stations of the Sun: A History of the Ritual Year in Britain

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OUP Oxford, Feb 15, 2001 - History - 560 pages
2 Reviews
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Comprehensive and engaging, this colourful study covers the whole sweep of ritual history from the earliest written records to the present day. From May Day revels and Midsummer fires, to Harvest Home and Hallowe'en, to the twelve days of Christmas, Ronald Hutton takes us on a fascinating journey through the ritual year in Britain. He challenges many common assumptions about the customs of the past, and debunks many myths surrounding festivals of the present, to illuminate the history of the calendar year we live by today.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - particle_p - LibraryThing

This is such a dense text that I still haven't made my way through it after several months, not for lack of trying. The information is interesting, but the book has no "pull" to it beyond the facts ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - LadyintheLibrary - LibraryThing

Perhaps occasionally more information than one needs, but the arcane detail is often delightful and intriguing. Read full review


The Origins of Christmas
The Twelve Days
The Trials of Christmas
Rites of Celebration and Reassurance
Rites of Purification and Blessing
Rites of Hospitality and Charity
Mummers Play and Sword Dance
HobbyHorse and Horn Dance
May Games and Whitsun Ales
Morris and Marian
Rogationtide and Pentecost
A Merrie
Corpus Christi

The Reinvention of Christmas
Speeding the Plough
Brigids Night
The Origins of Easter
Holy Week
An Egg at Easter
The Easter Holidays
England and St George
The Midsummer Fires
Sheep Hay and Rushes
First Fruits
Harvest Home
Wakes Revels and Hoppings
Saints and Souls
The Modern Halloween
Blood Month and Virgin Queen
Gunpowder Treason

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About the author (2001)

Ronald Hutton is Reader in History at the University of Bristol.

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