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The Sky in Legend and Tradition

  • 4th and 5th September 2021
  • Medieval Hall, Cathedral Close, Salisbury SP1 2EY

The Sky in Legend and Tradition

The Fifteenth Legendary Weekend of The Folklore Society

Saturday 4th and Sunday 5th September 2021

The Medieval Hall in Cathedral Close, Salisbury SP1 2EY

The flying pigs are knocking on Heaven’s door while thunderbirds circle the Merry Dancers and a woman standing on the moon bends over Endymion. Dragons release thunderbolts as parachuting nuns descend on Area 51. We’re walking in the air with flying ointment at the back of the North Wind when what to my wondering eyes should appear but a firedrake on a flying carpet. Horse and hattock! call the broomstick witches – Icarus is felled by elfshot but the Night Voyage is bright as St. Elmo’s fire on Jacob’s ladder, Bifrost trembles and a third part of the stars flame amazement. Let Phaethon saddle Pegasus and the Wild Huntsman chase Seven Whistlers through the Pearly Gates, for these late eclipses of the sun and moon are no twinkling little stars. Waft her, angels, to the skies where rain goes away in the sundance of Easter morning, there are gremlins in the chariots of the gods and Fata Morgana will buy us a stairway to Heaven.

Registration is £60 for the full weekend. To register, contact Jeremy Harte at bhallmuseum@gmail.com.



9.30 Registration and coffee

Session 1

10.00 Diana Coles, Aliens at Heaven’s Gate

10.30 Ernie Warner, Creation myths of the sky

11.00 Tea and coffee break

Session 2

11.30 Fionnuala Carson Williams, Sailors’ jackets and mackerel skies… a look at the sky in weather sayings in Ireland

12.00 Tommy Kuusela, The rainbow in Scandinavian myths and legends: From Old Norse mythology to rural folklore of the 19th century

12.30 Hazel Barron-Cooper, Dragon skies over Northumbria and Durham

13.00 Break for lunch

Session 3

14.30 Gail-Nina Anderson, Comets and Stars in Art

15.00 Gordon Casely, A place name on Mars

15.30 Sara Hannant, ‘Lunation’: about the moon

16.00 Tea and coffee break

Session 4

16.45 David Clarke, Nigel Kneale, Quatermass and the Ancient Astronauts legend

17.15 Janet Dowling, Myths of the Pleiades

17.45 Keith Shipton, Chaucer among the Stars


10.30 Morning coffee

11.00 Lucy Hornberger, Japan’s Shinto sky gods and goddesses

11.30 Michael Abiodun Saheed, Sky: examining Yoruba concepts through psychology

12.00 TBC

12.30 Break for lunch

13.30 A folkloric tour of Salisbury