Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 22, 1911.djvu/362

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326 Hampshire Folklore.

requires that the millpond should be drained out, and any who wish should go search the mud for eels and fish. Fareham Church is dedicated to St. Peter. At Itchen up to the end of the eighteenth century the fishermen kept the festival by carrying an image of the saint in procession ; the church is dedicated to St. Mary.

At Hurstbourne Tarrant the May festivities were held, as I have mentioned (p. 297), a week after the Bourne Revel Monday. " Bourne Revel Sunday " was the first Sunday in July, for the church is dedicated to St. Peter, but the Monday following the old 12th July is the day assigned by rumour. The Bourne Revel Club continued the old custom, but the Revel died out early in the last century. Sports took place, and the chief prizes competed for were half-guinea hats ! A platform was built over the stream by the Plough Inn, for wrestling and single-stick. Many noted wrestlers and adepts at " backsword-playing " would attend.*^

Naturally St. Swithun, Winchester's special local saint, has due meed of attention on his day.

"If Swithun's day be fair and clear, It betides a happy year ; If Swithun's day be dark with rain Then will be dear all sorts of grain." *2

In some of the more lonely farms on the Downs harvest home is still maintained with much of its old festivities and ceremony. An old woman who lived in the neigh- bourhood of Lockford in her youth told a lady I met many stories of the good old days, and sang some of the old country songs. My friend afterwards sent me this ploughing song, and a variant of the Derby Ram, both favourites in that locality her old gossip said : — ' Up steps the Master with a smiling look, "... It's time to unyoke.

  • ^ The Wiltshire Archccological and Natural History Magazine, vol. xxi.,

P- 334-

"•-Yonge, An Old Woman's Outlook etc., p. 169.