Jacks in the Green

Jack-in-the-Green is the green man of the woods who cavorts in the spring, but who must die before summer can begin. Or then again, maybe he isn't. He may well have been created by the chimney sweeps as a purely urban rite sometime in the eighteenth century.

Jack is usually a framework about 8 or 9 feet high covered all over with spring flowers and greenery. A dancer carries him through the streets, accompanied by other dancers, musicians, and general revelry. Eventually Jack is 'Killed' in a ceremony that releases the spirit of summer. Jack-in-the-Green processions usually take place on or about the first of May, it is considered unlucky for Jack to be seen at other times of the year.

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