THE TRANSFORMATION OF HARVEST CELEBRATIONS IN NINETEENTH–CENTURY LINCOLNSHIRE
Author: Ambler, R W.
Source: Midland History, Volume 3, Number 4, 1976 , pp. 298-306(9)
Publisher: Maney Publishing
Abstract:The main elements of traditional harvest-home celebrations have been well documented by folklorists throughout the country. These involved bringing home the last load of corn from the harvest field, escorted by the harvest workers and people of the village. Games, such as scrambling for apples or hot pennies, were often part of the celebrations, which were followed in the evening by a harvest-home supper with singing, dancing, and more tradiditional games. In some parts of the country the main harvest celebrations seem to have taken place after the last standing corn had been cut, but whatever their precise nature, they were an occasion when the social distinctions between a farmer and his workers were seen to be submerged in the common celebration of the harvest. However, during the 19th century these festivities were transformed. The celebration of the last load of corn frequently vanished altogether and although the harvest supper often remained, it was in a chastened and adapted form, modified by the introduction of the harvest-festival service in many Anglican churches, which was in its turn later taken up by non-conformist and other bodies. Harvest thanksgiving services were said to have entirely replaced the harvest supper in the Marshland of east Lincolnshire by the beginning of the 20th century.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: 1976-01-01