One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A Christian festival held on February 2 to commemorate the purification of the Virgin Mary (after childbirth, according to Jewish law) and the presentation of Christ in the Temple. Candles were traditionally blessed at this festival.
- ‘The mother, usually veiled, carried the candle blessed at Candlemas and waited penitently for the priest at the vestibule of the church with her husband and female companions.’
- ‘The theme of misrule in Twelfth Night was apt for the Candlemas performance.’
- ‘They resumed on Candlemas, and concluded with a masque presented before the Queen at Whitehall at Shrovetide.’
- ‘On the Roman Catholic feast day called Candlemas, all the ceremonial candles are blessed.’
- ‘At a meeting in September the Privy Council set the date: February 7th, a Thursday, during the week following the important festival of Candlemas, when Charles I himself had been crowned.’
- ‘The Middle Temple Hall, for example, saw in 2004 a performance of Twelfth Night on February 2nd, as it did on Candlemas 1602.’
- ‘She has been gone for four months, since Candlemas.’
- ‘What I never knew until now is that February 3, the day after Candlemas, is the Feast of St Blaise, the patron saint of wool combers.’
- ‘These days, the equivalent dates in Scotland are Martinmas, Candlemas, Whitsunday and Lammas.’
- ‘During Candlemas ceremonies, church-goers bring candles to church, where the flame is blessed and represents good will and luck in the coming year.’
- ‘This day, which as a child, I called Candlemas, was a religious holiday dedicated to a well-connected infant.’
- ‘On Candlemas pupils also paid a gratuity or ‘bleeze’ to their schoolmaster.’
- ‘Saturday, February 1, is the feast of St. Brigid; Sunday, 2nd, is the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord also known as Candlemas - the traditional day to bless candles donated by people for church use throughout the year.’
- ‘Mr Allen's sermon was on the feast of Candlemas, which fell on Sunday.’
- ‘One which scarcely survived into modern times was evidently important enough in the Middle Ages to have earned the suffix mas, along with Michaelmas, Hallowmas, Christmas and Candlemas.’
- ‘The Candlemas collection will take place on Saturday and Sunday, February 2 and 3, in St Manman's Church.’
- ‘Inclusion of the candle thus marks Mary's Christianization of the Jewish purification ritual, and fifteenth century women, imitating her example, offered a candle blessed at Candlemas during their churchings.’
- ‘It was said that if the weather was fair on the mid-winter feast day of Candlemas then winter would return in force.’
- ‘Today modern neopagans either celebrate it on the 1st or 2nd, the 2nd being more popular in America, perhaps because of a confusion with Candlemas.’
- ‘The person finding the small china doll or bean becomes King or Queen for the meal, but that person is also obligated to host a party or supper on Candlemas, February 2.’
Old English Candelmæsse (see candle, Mass).
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