Wassail at Wolf Blood Moon

Oil on canvas, 2019

25cm W x 30cm H


In ancient times, the January full moon (which is also a super moon) was known as the Wolf Moon due to the howling cries of hungry packs of wolves that could be heard in abundance at night throughout the tough months of mid winter, when prey was at its most scarce. The last wolf in Britain was said to have been killed in Scotland by Sir Ewan Cameron in 1680, but there were tales of wolf sightings right up until 1888. Also at this time of year and still to this day, particularly in cider drinking regions, the ancient tradition of Wassailing (also once known as ‘Howling’) takes place. People gather and perform rituals where cider is poured on to the roots of apple trees, and slices of toast are tied to branches to attract robins and the guardian spirits of trees. Songs are sung and loud noises are made, where guns are fired over the tops of the trees, to scare away any lingering evil spirits that could interfere with the blessing of the orchard to ensure a bountiful apple cider harvest for the coming year.

Ben Edge | Wassail at Wolf Blood Moon


Ben Edge

Wassail at Wolf Blood Moon