Category: Folklife

Dark Folklore: The Hand of Glory in Folk Magic

We’ve all heard of the infamous hand of glory, the hand of a dead man, hanged for his crimes, and it’s often said that it could be used to open any lock.

Continue reading

Folklore Festivals: Five Italian Folklore-Filled Weekends in October

Italian festivals offer glimpses of life in a previous time through food, re-enactments and sporting events. These events will satisfy history buffs and foodies alike. PALIO degli ASINI – Race of the…

Continue reading

All Hael! All Hael! Singing with the Kibbo Kift

What sort of music did a 1920s utopian youth movement fiercely opposed to mainstream society actually like? The Kindred of the Kibbo Kift (‘KK’) were creatures of their time.

Continue reading

Purgatory in Spanish Folklore: The Night of the Ánimas

In rural Spain, the night still belongs to the ánimas, the spirits of the dead who didn’t go straight to Heaven or Hell.

Continue reading

Arcadia Britannica: A Modern British Folklore portrait by Henry Bourne

Arcadia Britannica is an ongoing photographic portrait project of the myriad of different British folklore traditions and customs

Continue reading

Slavic Traditions: The Garlands of Midsummer’s Eve

In Poland, Midsummer's Eve garlands would be set on water, their path on the surface foretelling the owner’s future, and protecting from spells and curses.

Continue reading

Morris Folk: Making History

The Morris Folk project arose from a desire to document something as ephemeral as dance in new and innovative ways.

Continue reading

Upcoming Event: The Ballad of British Folklore

We've just received an exciting press release about an exhibition charting the history of the The Museum of British Folklore.

Continue reading

Cicorc Conwy: Lucky Cork Sea-Dogs

These cicorc (or cork-dogs) were seen as good luck charms and also gave the sailors something else to think about whilst preparing for long voyages.

Continue reading

From the Gorgon to the Gift Shop: A Brief Archaeology of the Evil Eye

The matiasma is an apotropaic amulet designed to ward off the evil eye in Greek folklore.

Continue reading

Folklore of the Sea: A Curiosity of Maritime Myths and Traditions

Sailors have traditionally been associated with many myths and magical aspects of the sea, travellers and bringers of tales and far-off treasures.

Continue reading

The Polish Tradition of Holy Sepulchre Guardians

A traditional festival is held annually in South Eastern Poland where locals re-enact what may be an historical event, yet is certainly a local legend. Legend tells then when Polish soldiers returned to their village on Good Friday…

Continue reading

Trees: Wisdom at the Root of Folklore

When we stand beneath a tree and gaze up into its branches, perhaps running our fingers over the textured bark and admiring the rich collage of mosses and lichens

Continue reading

The Burryman’s Day: Marking Time, Place and Community in Modern Scotland

The Burryman is a seasonal tradition taking place each August in South Queensferry, Scotland. Although the origins are now obscure, it is still a vital part of the town's year

Continue reading