Midsummer Watch Parade, Chester, UK
Of special note in this parade, all the way back to 1498, is the presence of 'giants' – enormous structures made of cardboard and buckram and carried by two men – which were a fairly standard feature of Tudor-period pageantry in England and Europe. However, Chester outshone them all as it paraded a whole family of giants. The crowd also enjoyed, then as now, processing creatures such as a unicorn, elephant, camel and dragon. Until the Puritan 16th Century, when the practice was banned, the dragon was beaten by six naked boys.
The Midsummer Watch also features parading guildsmen, jesters, and children in costume – angels, goblins and green men ...
Categories: england, folklore, christianity, calendar-customs