Easter in Early Modern England

Other traditions, especially the lost ones, are very interesting.

Catherine Meyrick

Easter sunrise

The Lenten and Easter season in pre-Reformation England was rich in sights and sounds and smells. Shrove Tuesday was celebrated with pancakes and football games, plays and masquerades. Ash Wednesday brought the blessing of ashes and their application by the priest to the foreheads of the faithful with the injunction ‘Remember O man that thou are dust and to dust thous shalt return’. Statues and images were veiled in cloth and a Lenten veil hung, obscuring the chancel from the laity. The Lenten fast began, a fast not only from meat but also eggs and dairy products, marriage and sexual activity.

Five and a half weeks later Easter Week commenced with Palm Sunday. Palms or, as this was England, evergreen branches were blessed and sprinkled with holy water by the priest. The priest, carrying a consecrated host in a monstrance, then led the laity with their palms in a procession out…

View original post 1,256 more words

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.