The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #116913   Message #1362044
Posted By: GUEST,Anne Croucher
20-Dec-04 - 11:34 PM
Thread Name: Folklore: Stupid Question but what is Wassail
Subject: RE: What is a wassail/wassailing?
My Dad used to say 'veis heil, good health' as a toast - he was a country boy from the North of England. If he was with someone he had known for a long time he just said 'veis heil'.

I never associated it with wassail until I saw a program about Norsemen and they filmed a group of reenactors. For some reason the subtitles were on - it might have been a late night rerun with signing etc.

It seems sensible to me to wish 'good health' to the fruit trees - though you should stick a couple of chunks of cider dipped bread in the branches, for the birds. I think the logic is that you see the local little birds through the Winter and they will turn up in Spring to pick off the grubs and bugs for you so you don't get maggoty apples in the Autumn.