Imbolg is an ancient Celtic festival and celebration that takes place on Feburary 1st in the northern hemisphere. Imbolg is a fire festival celebrating the promise of the return of spring or the rekindling of the solar hearth.
This festival is associated with the goddess Brigid (or Bríg) who is associated with wisdom, poetry, arts and crafts, healing, protection, blacksmithing and domesticated animals. It is said that Bridgid started the custom of keening.
“Moch maduinn Bhride,
Thig an nimhir as an toll,
Cha bhoin mise ris an nimhir,
Cha bhoin an nimhir rium.”
“Early on Bride’s morn
The serpent shall come from the hole,
I will not molest the serpent,
Nor will the serpent molest me.”
- Hymn to the serpent, coming out of slumber on Imbolc
Rituals and traditions
After a feast, each family would gather and making a Brigid’s cross, a cross made out of straw or reeds which would then be hung over a doorway for protection.
Symbols: Swan, Sheep, Serpent, Flame, Brigid’s cross
Colors: White, Silver and Green
Herbs and plants: Blackberry, Coltsfoot, Ginger, snowdrops
Trees: Rowan, Willow