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Wicca
and some other neopagan religions

The eight Sabbats, These are
seasonal days of celebration:
2 solstices, 2 equinoxes,
and four major Sabbats.

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The Wiccan Sabbats There are eight Wiccan Sabbats, on average, spaced about 46 days apart during the year. In the Northern Hemisphere:

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Four of these are minor Sabbats:

  • The two equinoxes of March 21 and September 21st when the daytime and nighttime are each vey close to 12 hours long.

  • To these, the Saxons added the two solstices of December 21, (the longest night of the year) and June 21 (the shortest night of the year).

Actually, the exact date of these minor Sabbats vary from year to year and may occur from the 20th to 23rd of the month.

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The major Sabbats are also four in number. They occur roughly midway between the minor Sabbats, typically at the end of a month. Different Wiccan traditions assign various names and dates to these festivals. Perhaps the most common names are Celtic: Samhain (Oct. 31), Imbolc (Feb. 2), Beltane (Apr. 30), and Lammas (Aug. 1).

The Sabbats are believed to have originated in the cycles associated with hunting, farming, and animal fertility in the Northern Hemisphere.

Dates are approximate. Some Wiccans observe Sabbats within a few days of the nominal date.

Dates are listed above are typical for the Northern Hemisphere. Dates in the Southern Hemisphere are usually offset by six months.

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About the Sabbats:

Dates are shown for the Northern Hemisphere. Add 6 months for the Southern Hemisphere. Some alternate names are provided:

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Samhain (OCT-31) - All Hallow's Eve, All Saints' Day, All Hallows, Day of All the Saints, Feast of All Saints, Solemnity of All Saints, All Souls Day.

bullet Winter Solstice (~+mn~DEC-21) - Alban Arthan, Saturnalia, Yule, Christmas...

bullet Imbolc (JAN-31 to FEB-02) - Bride's day, Candlemas Day, Groundhog Day...

bullet Vernal Equinox (~+mn~MAR-21) - Alban Eilir, Eostar, Eostre, Lady Day, Ostara...

bullet Beltane (MAY-01) - Beltain, Beltainne, Beltaine, Bealtaine, Beltany, May Eve, May Day, Walpurgis Night...

bullet Summer Solstice (~+mn~JUN-21) - Part 1  Part 2  Part 3: Alban Hefin, Gathering Day, Midsummer, Vestalia...

bullet Lammas (AUG-1)

bullet Fall Equinox (~+mn~SEP-21) - Alban Elfed, Mabon, Autumn Equinox, Harvest Home...

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Copyright 2002 to 2017 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Originally written: 2002-AUG-7
Latest update: 2017-APR-25
Author: B.A. Robinson

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