web analytics

Kenavo

One New Years Eve, a strange noise was heard in the small Kerry village of Portmagee… a strange procession of sailors from a ship from Nantes proceeded up the village, starting a tradition that continues to this day in its modern form…

While at the Valentia Island festival with the Tullamore Rhymers, I took a walk around the nearby village of Portmagee, where I learned of this story of a Breton New Year tradition...
While at the Valentia Island festival with the Tullamore Rhymers, I took a walk around the nearby village of Portmagee, where I learned of this story of a Breton New Year tradition…

Out with the old and in with the new
Music played one New Years night by a Breton ships crew
The sailors procceded, led by an old old man, who had arrived there from Nantes
Marching up the town to music, merry and nonchalante…

They march down to their boat again, merry men, to music with glee
Watched by the bemused locals of the town of Portmagee
In time from their ship our freinds did return
This time headed, dressed in tails, by a man lithe and young!

A new years tradition, Breton, to the natives it was told
They welcome in the new year, bury the old
As Scotland has its Hogmanay to celebrate New Year
They say Kenavo to the old one in Portmagee, over here!

The story told on the information plaque in Portmagee in Co. Kerry.
The story told on the information plaque in Portmagee in Co. Kerry.

Comments

comments

%d bloggers like this: