Updated: Feb 23, 2022
Langtree Botanic’s signature range of fragranced candles, 'aroma truffles' wax melts and soaps are inspired by the 8 ancient celebrations of nature and the annual cycle of the seasons. We have created our own version of the Wheel of the Year to represent the pagan festivities, using our own modernised celebration names.
The wheel of the year depicts the solstices and equinoxes and the 4 sabbats of each year. The celebrations divide the year into 8 equal parts. The celebrations are largely marked by solar movement, significant activity in agriculture such as the harvests, and also the activity of human kind.
The 4 astronomical events -vernal equinox (Ostara, Eostra, the celebration of new life and the beginning of spring), summer solstice (midsummer), autumn equinox (Mabon, harvest festival) and the winter solstice (Yule, more commonly known as Christmas in Christian countries) follow the progression of the sun throughout the year and mark the longest and shortest day of the year and when the day and night are of equal length twice a year, and in turn the changing of the seasons.
In addition to the solstices and equinoxes, the 4 ‘fire festivals’ are:
Imbolc (also known as Candlemass, Imblog, Imbole, Brigid's Day), February 2nd. Traditionally a time for blessing the house and lighting candles to honour the sun’s rebirth after the harsh winter.
Beltane (also known as Celtic May Day), 30th April - 1st May. It officially begins at moonrise on May Day Eve with the lighting of celebration fires and accompanied with exuberant dancing and merriment! More modern versions include May pole dancing and the crowing of the May Queen.
Lammas (also known as lughnasadh, Lunasa). This is an Irish Gaelic name for the feast which commemorates the funeral games of Lugh, Celtic god of light, and son of the Sun. It is the celebration of the first harvest of the year at the beginning of August.
Samhain (pronounced Sow -en, also known as Halloween or All Hallows Eve), October 31st. Samhain is the celebration of the last harvest of the year, a time to honour the end of summer and the incoming darker months. The veil between the us and the otherworld is said to be at its thinnest, and strange things can happen; a time to honour the dead.
Those eagle eyed amongst you may notice that these festivals coincide with many modern day Christian significant occasions. Basically, missionary’s and governing bodies of the past clearly decided that it’s unlikely that they could stop people celebrating so instead adapted the for there their own cause - if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em!
Langtree Botanic's Wheel of the Year was lovingly created by Dave Felstead.