Aguillanneuf

Aguillanneuf

(A-gui-l'an-nef/), an old cry used on Jan. 1 as a mode of rejoicing. It is derived from the Druids, who at the beginning of the year distributed the blessed mistletoe to the people, announcing at the same time the new year. In Brittany, Picardy, and Burgundy the children are said still to sing these words on New-year's-day.

The name was also given to a collection made in some dioceses on Jan. 1 to procure candles for the churches. Young persons of both sexes took part in it, and were apt to commit, even in the churches, all sorts of extravagances.' The Synod of Angers, in 1595, prohibited these proceedings within churches; but the custom still continued out of them until a later synod (1668) forbade the observance of it altogether.' See Moreri, who cites Thiers, Traiti des Jeux.

 
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