Day the Eleventh: Festivals, days, and times sacred to this deity.
The Horn Dance.
I first read about the Horn Dance in Eric Fitch’s book, In Search of Herne the Hunter, mentions a local festival which he believes is “a living echo” of an earlier time.
In A Staffordshire village there is still enacted a ritual dance incorporating not only traditional figured and costumes but also antlers. In early September for one day the village of Abbots Bromley sees a remarkable folk custom taking place in its streets. Called the Horn Dance it consists of six dancers who each hold a set of antlers and engage in a folk dance accompanied by a group of other characters.
And then I found this BBC clip on youtube.
It is England’s oldest continual-running traditional dance, and carbon dating places the reindeer antlers to 10th Century.
Neo-Pagan Wheel of the Year
For those of us whose practice is more Neo-Pagan, we can honour Herne through our traditional Wheel of the Year. I choose to celebrate at both Litha and Yule. Outside of the story of the Holly and Oak King, I see it as two aspects of Herne’s reign, and two aspects of his personality. At Yule I honour his darker aspects, the Herne that leads the Wild Hunt. At Litha, I honour his lighter aspects, the Herne that is the Lord of the Forests.
Personally I’ve love the between times – feeling his energy rise and fall between to two major holidays.