Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Legal, Wikipedia.
Lughnasadh(religion, spiritualism, and occult)
The August Eve sabbat of Witchcraft, pronounced "Loo-nu'-suh." Named for the Celtic fire and light god Lugh (variations: Lug, Hugh, Llew), a young, beautiful god with some of the attributes of the Greek god Apollo. He possessed a massive spear and a sling, with which he put out the eye of Balor. The Farrars believe him to be the same god as Baal/Beli/Balor, albeit a later version of him. In Irish mythology Lugh, as leader of the Tuatha Dé Danann, is the renewal of Balor, king of the Fomors. In his book Witches, T. C. Lethbridge looks at the replacement of pagan gods with Christian saints and details many parish churches now dedicated to St. Michael as being built on sites associated with Lugh.
The Christianized version of Lughnasadh is Lammas, from the Old English for "loaf-mass," and this name is favored by some modern Witches. This is a time of first harvests, the wheat from which went into the making of loaves of bread. There is a thanksgiving at this time, together with rituals to endure the fruitfulness of the next year's crops. This is also a time for the thinning out of plants toward a better harvest. Ritual dramas acted out at this time might include enactment of the death and rebirth of the god, or the killing of the old god by the young one.
See also Crom Dubh Sunday; St. Patrick's Day; Tailte Fair
DictFolkMyth-1984, pp. 202, 652
FestSaintDays-1915, p. 165
FolkWrldHol-1999, p. 485
OxYear-1999, p. 274