Tuesday, March 20, 2007

The Daily Hump: A Warm Beltane

Continuing with yesterday's theme (I'm still thinking about the creepy goodness of The Wicker Man), today I'm looking at the holiday being celebrated by the Summerisle residents, Beltane. Beltane is Lowland Scot coming from the Gaelic bealltainn, corresponding to our May 1, which marked the start of summer in the Celtic calendar.

The related Old Irish beltene is from belo-te(p)niâ
where the first element belo- is a cognate with the English word bale (as in bale-fire), the Anglo-Saxon bael, and also the Lithuanian baltas, meaning 'white' or 'shining' and from which the Baltic Sea takes its name.
The second element may be from the Old Irish ten "fire" (thus Beltene would be "bright fire"). This element is from Proto-Indo-European *tepnos, which is related to Latin tepidus "warm".

Beltane [OED]
Beltane [Wikipedia]
Beltane [Online Etymology Dictionary]

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:: posted by David, 8:03 AM


Do they really run around with cat masks on? Creeeeepy.
Blogger Auntie Sarah, at 8:54 AM  
Where's Rowan?

Rowan's in the field...

Blogger Loocite, at 9:21 AM  

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