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James Callow Folklore Archive

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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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CANDLE LIGHT

IN THE WOMEN'S DORMS AT STATE, WHENEVER A GIRL BECOMES
ENGAGED OR PINNED SHE TELLS ONLY THE RESIDENT ADVISER
ON HER FLOOR WHO THEN POSTS AN ANNOUNCEMENT THAT
THERE WILL BE A "CANDLE-LIGHT." THE GIRLS MEET AND
EACH HOLD A LIGHTED CANDLE. THEY SIT IN A CIRCLE AND
RECITE A POEM, EACH SAYING ONE WORD (THIS IS USUALLY
A FAMILIAR LOVE POEM, SOMETIMES ONE WRITTEN ESPECIALLY
FOR THE OCCASION). WHEN IT IS THE TURN OF THE GIRL
WHO IS ENGAGED, SHE THEN BLOWS OUT HER CANDLE. THEN
ANNOUNCES SHE IS THE ONE.

Submitter comment: A POSSIBLE VARIATION OF THIS I HAVE HEARD IN PASSING,
ONE LIT CANDLE AROUND UNTIL THE ENGAGED GIRL BLOWS IT
OUT. WHEN THE LIGHTS ARE TURNED BACK ON, SHE SHOWS
EVERYONE HER RING OR PIN.

Where learned: MICHIGAN STATE STUDENT ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED ; EAST LANSING

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Marriage Engagement

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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THE INFORMANT'S FRENCH-CANADIAN GRANDMOTHER, CALLED
"MIMI" BY HER GRANDCHILDREN, TURNED FRESH BAKED
BREAD OVER AND CUT A CROSS IN IT BEFORE SLICING IT.

Where learned: MICHIGAN STATE STUDENT

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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