7 Quick Facts about the Pagan Festival of Imbolc

by GH

This is not in the least bit creepy. U.K. Imbolc procession. Photo: Steven Earnshaw via Flickr.

This is not in the least bit creepy. U.K. Imbolc procession. Photo: Steven Earnshaw via Flickr.

 

  1. It marks the halfway point between the winter solstice and the spring equinox.
  2. The “b” in “Imbolc” is silent.
  3. The day is associated with Brigid, the Irish goddess of poetry, who also, while mourning for her son killed in battle, invented keening.
  4. Brigid is a “triple deity”—she has two sisters named Brigid.
  5. The day was Christianized into the feast day of St. Brigid of Kildare, one of the three patron saints of Ireland.
  6. A traditional Imbolc dish is colcannon, or mashed potatoes with milk and cabbage.
  7. Imbolc could be a considered a forerunner of Groundhog’s Day—the tradition was to watch for badgers to emerge.