Just as the last two days have been about the weather, today and tomorrow are all about love, for St Luke, despite being the patron saint of doctors and artists, is known for his penchant for overnight matchmaking. Although, tomorrow night’s folklore is also quoted as happening today, and tonight’s is quoted as belonging to Halloween. These things can get very confusing.
But no matter. For tonight’s folklore, first I had to get myself a crooked sixpence. I did find one on Ebay but then forgot about it and got outbid. So I bought a normal sixpence, a normal 100 year old sixpence. Once I’d established that biting it wasn’t going to bend it, I went into Timpsons, where a lovely, if a little bemused young man called Paul, very kindly put my sixpence in his vice and be-crooked it with his hammer.
Then all that was left was to pair my crooked sixpence with the sprig of rosemary I’d picked from my favourite scrubland bush.
Now all I have to do is slip them both under my pillow before I go to bed, and I shall dream of my husband to be. For the fourth? fifth time this project? I know I should remember but I have been at this for 283 days, give or take. As crooked sixpences are a traditional love charm and rosemary is said to promote marital bliss, and to conquer bad dreams if popped under the bed, I could be on to a winner.
Incidentally, due to this cold snap, I busted out my winter coat this week and found my thimble still in the pocket. Walking to the shops I slipped it on for good luck, every little bit helps these days.
Baker, M. (2019) Discovering The Folklore of Plants, Oxford, Shire Publications
Cooper, Q. and Sullivan, P. (1994) Maypoles, Martyrs & Mayhem: 366 Days of British Myths, Customs & Eccentricities, London, Bloomsbury Publishing Plc
Hazlitt, W.C. (1995) The Dictionary of Faiths and Folklore, Beliefs, Superstitions and Popular Customs, London, Bracken Books
Roud, S. (2006) The English Year: A Month-By-Month Guide To The Nation’s Customs and Festivals, From May Day to Mischief Night, London, Penguin Books
Russell, K. (2014) Bright Morning Star, New York, Page Publishing, Inc.