The Queen's Shadow
Passage of Time
The Calender for this world is based on the moon cycles. The year is marked by 13 moons divide into 4 seasons (3 moons a season) and one resting moon. Year is represented by the wheel, 8 festivals are celebrated to make each passing of the year and event of importance.1. Birth Moon 2. Awakening Moon 3. Nurturing Moon 4. Growing Moon 5. Fertilising Moon (also known as the Fathering Moon) 6. Mothering Moon (aka the Pregnant Moon) 7. Ripening Moon 8. Harvesting Moon 9. Storing Moon 10. Ageing Moon 11. Ailing Moon 12. Death Moon 13. Resting Moon
Imbloc – the exact date of this festive changes from year to year and area to area it is celebrated when the first bud begins to open in the local Festival of rebirth, or the first sings of spring and the start of opening buds. Time of spring cleaning, of birth and awakening of life.
*Ostara *- is the spring equinox it is the time of year when the hours of light are equal to the hours of dark, it is a festival of balance and restocking from the winter of using up stocks, typically a large market day followed by celebrations for many, others use the time to step back an take stock of their life.
Beltane – is celebrated on the new moon of the Fertile Moon It is a fertility festival, women ware garlands of flowers, buildings are filled with flowers and new greens. Traditionally it is the night when the disinclined would be left in charge of the children in the village/town barn. It is not however an mass of orgies, it is seen as a sacred and private night between couples.
Litha is the Summer Solstice The day where the sun holds sway over the moon, it is a time for light, to celebrate and thank the sun for the warmth and light which watches over all life. It is a time to ask for good ripe harvests to come. The celebrations begin on the eve and the village watches the sun rise often lighting a fire at its first rays. Then they will then stay up the whole of the next day to watch it set, often people sleep in the day so that they can watch the sun rise and set.
Lammas changeable date once more often marked by the turning of the wheat marks the start of the harvest season, many crops are ripening and approaching harvest, some are already there. more often than not it is now a festival of bread, villages hold baking competitions.
Madron is the Autumn Equinox once more the world is in balance of light and dark this festival is the counterbalance to the spring one. This time the market festival is about taking stock to prepare for the winter months. It is also a harvest festival, giving thanks for a fully gathered harvest.
Samhain (pronounced sow’ane) Is the night of remembrance and reflection, for many it is a time of final planning and preparation for winter, it is a solemn feast to remember those who died from last Samhain to this, many visit the sites of they dead loved ones to leave wishes that their new life be filled with goodness. It is the night most will not venture out for fear of meeting Falwyn in her dark aspect. To the witches in the north there is much more symbolism and meaning but that is unknown to the general populace.
Yule – Midwinter, winter solstice. This is the darkest night, it is a time for families to gather about their fires, bring in the green of the evergreens to remember life lives and survives in winter. It is the last feast in defiance to the usual commonly of saving stores for winter.
Resting Moon No festival is celebrated in this moon, it is the moon which symbolises the point between life and rebirth, a void as it were, it is a time when no major task is allowed to be done, all building, repairs, mending etc is forbidden (to an extent) and project started in this month is said to be doomed to fail.
Time is measured by the passing of the sun, moon and stars when out and about. It is not so accurate in the rural areas where exact times are not needed so much. It tends to be regarded as dawn, high sun and sunset. In towns it is a bit more measured using candle marks.
Each candle mark measure the time it takes to burn down between marks. The wax on time candles is a blended mix to allow for slow and even burning.
There are 20 marks on an candle each mark is just over an hour in our time. A mark is divided into a half mark and a quarter mark.
Time is referred to a Marks, either in order 1st mark is true dawn (sunrise) that day (so time changes from city to city and is not fixed as our one is)
A time bell is found in many towns and cities, it is rung every Mark, three strokes.
Mark Pins – these are heavy headed pins inserted into a candle at a specific time the uses wishes to be noted, such as for a timer or alarm, when the wax burns to that point the pin falls onto the metal plate alerting the used to the time.