Thursday, February 02, 2017

Groundhog


Our North American Ground Hog Day seems to secularize the British Candlemas. Both occur February 2. A sunny Candlemas presages a cold spring.
There’s the Scottish saying “If Candlemas is fair and clear, there’ll be two winters in the year” and a rural maxim “February second day, have half your corn and half your hay.” Growing up Catholic in Canada I never heard the word Candlemas. I think we called it The Presentation of our Lord in the Temple. Is it thus connected to the bar mitzvah? Candles are lit in the hope of rushing out those damn cold months of winter. The date was established ages ago by Justinian the Great.     

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