Mari Lwyd for the year 2023 is celebrated/observed on Tuesday, January 25th. There are until the next observance.
Mari Lwyd is observed between Christmas and the Twelfth Night after Christmas. This occurs from December 25 to January 6 each year, but the dates vary in each hamlet. It is part of a ritual in which a singer disguised as a horse performs with an accompanying group in the hopes of receiving food and drink. A parting song concludes the visit. Allowing a Mari Lwyd onto the premises is good luck, as the horse brings good prosperity. The custom has been carried out differently in each village. When international tourists first see this horse, they are often taken aback.
📆 When is Mari Lwyd?
This year, Mari Lwyd falls on the 4th Tuesday in January; in 2023, it is on Wednesday.
→ Did you know: Horse skulls have been discovered hidden in building structures, mainly under the foundation or floor, in Ireland, England, Wales, and the Scandinavian Peninsula.
📜 History of Mari Lwyd
The actual festival began at nightfall and frequently went late into the night. During it, the skull is carried around the village streets by a group known as the Merry Men, who stand in front of each home and sing traditional songs. If the person who lives there can’t sing a song against them, the Mari party and the people who live there will sometimes make up their own rhymes and verses to explain why they need to get in and why they should be let in.
The custom began to fade in the twentieth century, due in part to a drop in the number of Welsh speakers but also to the rising rowdiness and intoxication that became associated with it—an undesirable conduct, especially with the advent of the chapel and Methodism in Wales. However, there has been a resurgence of ensembles playing around Wales in recent years.
☑️ Mari Lwyd facts
✅ They can be quite expensive
Horse skulls may range in price from $900 to $4,000, depending on quality and size.
✅ They have traditional roots
Horse skulls are part of a wider traditional custom of hiding things within structures.
✅ Horse skulls can improve sound
There is a belief that dumping them in buildings, such as a church or threshing barn, improves the acoustics of a space.
✅ They are believed to repel evil
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✨ Things to do on Mari Lwyd
Learn about the historical festival
If you’re unfamiliar with this event or simply want to learn more about it, now is an excellent day to do it. You can get the information and data you need from the internet, the library, and other people who know about it.
Participate in decorating a Mari Lwyd
The adorning of the horse skull is one of the festival’s events. You’re sure to have a good time if you add your own creative touch to it.
Share pictures and videos
Post images and videos from the day’s events on your social media accounts and any other platforms that are available. This will help spread the word about how fantastic the event is and preserve wonderful memories.
📅 Mari Lwyd Observances
We will continue to update this page with new information and fun facts about Mari Lwyd. So be sure to check back soon.