Wednesday, 1 May 2013

May Day and May Day

Maypoles and flowers?

Or workers' power?

What does May Day mean to you?

I wore bright yellow flowers in my hair but my boss told me I should have been wearing red instead...


  1. Well, that's something to look into! I think my mother-in-law used to dance around the May-pole in England, as a child. In my Oxford Junior Encyclopaedia printed in 1959, it speaks of the custom of 'maying' - going out into the woods before dawn to collect flowers and branches. It adds that this custom "is not kept much today". Then there is the election of the May Queen and, this is delightful, "In Oxford May Day is traditionally celebrated by the singing of a hymn to the sun from the top of Magdalen College tower...". Elsewhere there is mention of Morris dancers. But I know nothing of the "Workers' Power" connection. I'll look further. Thank you!

  2. Further... I'm excited to realise your post explains the "May Day, Hyde Park" Underground Rail poster of 1924 which is in the 2013 Underground Diary! The words "May" and "Day" have an unnecessarily large space between them - because they wanted to fit "Old and New" underneath. Then under "Old" in brackets is "(Revels)" and under "Day" is "(Rally)". These are all on the left of the maypole, with "Hyde Park by Underground" on the right of the maypole. I had wondered at this. Thank you!

    1. You're welcome! Always happy to have encouraged someone to learn something new. I have to confess that I'm more familiar with the old tradition of May Day, hence wearing the yellow flowers in my hair!