December, 2018

Welsh Winter Traditions, Part 2: The Hunting of the Wren

The Hunting of the Wren – Hela’r Dryw – is a winter mumming custom practiced in Wales and other Celtic countries since at least the middle ages. There are two distinct phases of the practice: the hunt itself, and the subsequent parading of the captured wren. While each of these phases were often performed over the course of several days, they may both have originated from a single ceremony that evolved in practice and meaning over time. Although, like the Mari Lwyd, there is no direct evidence which connects the wren hunt to ancient Pagan practices, folk wisdom associates wrens […]