Moon Books Blog

Here we share news and updates about Moon Books.


The Wheel of the Year Turns: Customs for New Year’s Eve - By Lucya Starza

While New Year’s Eve celebrations might seem non-religious, some customs are close to what our pagan ancestors got up to. Historically, New Year’s Eve got a boost after the Reformation in the 16th century, when Christmas festivities came under attack as being too Catholic. In Scotland, people switched their celebrations to December 31st and the feast got called Hogmanay.

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December in the Wheel of the Year Part 3: Kindling the Lights of Yuletide By Lucya Starza

People have always celebrated at this time of year. One of the biggest Roman December festivals was Saturnalia, in honour of Saturn, god of wealth, plenty, liberation and agriculture. Starting on December 17 it was a week of partying, feasting, gift-giving and drinking – a bit like Christmas.

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December in the Wheel of the Year Part 2: Holly and Ivy By Lucya Starza

Bringing holly into the house in December is more ancient than Christmas trees. Romans decorated their villas with holly for Saturnalia, on December 17, which was somewhat like modern Christmas Magically, holly has protective powers. Planted around your home, it helps ward all who dwell within from harmful spells, malicious fairies and evil spirits.

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December in the Wheel of the Year Part 1: Christmas Trees, Crowleymass and Krampus Night By Lucya Starza

As I’m sure most people are aware, Christmas trees only became popular in England after Queen Victoria and Prince Albert had one in their home in 1848. Steve Roud in The English Year explains they were seen in England before that, but weren’t common. An older midwinter way to deck the house with greenery was to hang a kissing bough from the ceiling. Roud wrote: “One thing the Victorians didn’t invent was kissing under the mistletoe.”

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November in the Wheel of the Year Part 3: The Transition into Winter - By Lucya Starza

Late November sees autumn’s end. At the start of the month where I live, in England, there were still some leaves on the trees although many were shades of red, brown and gold. By the end of the month, following winds and rain, the oak and ash and thorn stand stark and bare. But although the nights are long and dark, we start to prepare for the midwinter festivals.

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November in the Wheel of the Year Part 2: Sacrifice and Remembrance - By Lucya Starza

November is Blood Month. At least the Anglo-Saxon name it was Blod-Monath according to the Venerable Bede. Professor Ronald Hutton in Stations of the Sun writes that this is because it was when cattle that couldn’t be kept over winter were slaughtered.

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November in the Wheel of the Year Part 1: Charity and Rebellion - By Lucya Starza

In the modern Wheel of the Year, November is a month without a major pagan festival, but the wheel still turns and change is in the air. In this post I’m writing about seasonal customs in the early days of November that might not be overtly pagan, but are still relevant.

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October in the Wheel of the Year: Samhain, Halloween and Mischief Night - By Lucya Starza

October 31st is a major Wheel of the Year festival for modern pagans, whether you call it Halloween, Samhain or anything else. I live in England, and a few traditional customs that are similar to Halloween take place in October in my country, but their origins are unclear.

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October in the Wheel of the Year: Old Age, Autumn Fairs and Apples - By Lucya Starza

While Samhain is the major Wheel of the Year event in October for pagans, there are other festivals and feast days earlier in the month.

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September in the Wheel of the Year: Autumn Equinox - By Lucya Starza

The equinoxes are when the hours of day and night are of equal length. In the northern hemisphere the autumn equinox is on September 22nd this year. That’s the spring equinox in the southern hemisphere, but for me living in London it is feeling autumnal now.

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September in the Wheel of the Year: The Start of Autumn - Lucya Starza

Autumn arrives in England in September, but opinions vary on when it actually starts. Some regard the seasons as starting or centring on the equinoxes and solstices – that’s the astronomical definition.

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September in the Wheel of the Year: Festivals Old and New - Lucya Starza

The festivals of September include a wide range of annual customs, ancient and modern, quite apart from the Autumn Equinox festival in the Modern Pagan Wheel of the Year. I’ll be writing a blog post about that closer to September 22, but here’s a look at some other magical things to celebrate this month.

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