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A garland shall be framed
By art and nature’s skill,
Of sundry-colored flowers,
In token of good-will.
And sundry-colored ribbons
On it I will bestow;
But chiefly blacke and yellowe
With her to grave shall go.

I’ll deck her tomb with flowers
The rarest ever seen;
And with my tears as showers
I’ll keep them fresh and green.

– Corydon’s Doleful Knell

Wyl Nos, Gwyl Nos: Lamentation Night: All fires are extinguished at a death. Praises are sung to the dead and it is called wake or lyke in Ireland and the Highlands. The body in a racholl: winding sheet is watched or waked for one or more nights (as many as twelve in ancient times). Women are hired to caoine (pron. KEEN) cry and lament from dusk until dawn and paid in whiskey: water of life. They stand by the body until the dawn when the soul is awakened. Cumadh is Scottish bagpipe funeral music. The Druid fled co-lige: funeral feast is followed by cluiche caintec: funeral games to celebrate rebirth. faire (-í) funeral wake (8, 15)

Cobhain, Ysgriniau: (pron. coffin) A wood box for the dead. In Glamorganshire the bed where the corpse lies is covered with flowers. A chaplet of white flowers is borne before the corpse. The white rose is planted at the grave of a virgin; her chaplet tied with white ribbons or white and black ribbons intermingled. The red rose is in remembrance of benevolence. Roses are planted at the graves of lovers. where the maidens yearly planted and decked the graves of their defunct sweethearts with rose-bushes. (8, 28)

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© 1998. Christine O’Keeffe, Ver. 3.0 Thursday, January 29, 2004