All Things Green Man & The Traditional Jack-in-the-Green

Archive for Dec, 2014

Historical Jack-in-the-Green – December

May Day or Jack in the Green

Each month I publish a  newspaper article that featured the traditional Jack-in-the-Green along with a picture or photograph from the archive. Each of these articles is a fascinating window into a bygone era. For more information about the Jack in the Green both current and historical visit our main website at:


 The 1st of May is unquestionably a species of carnival in this country ; it comprises among Charles Lamb’s friends the chummies or sweeps, “fiddling, masking, dancing, and other things that may be had for asking” – that is, a few pence ; and, thanks be to this cold northern clime of ours, nothing more. Pity it is that they should be to the busy – those intent on worldly gain – a nuisance. They are so in the strait-built streets of the city, where the commerce of the world is transacted. But who of kindly heart, on the 1st day of May, cares for the growls of the obstructed merchant, or the curses of the hemmed importer? Look at the children how they flock together – how they run after “Jack-in-the-green,” and his masked, and piping, and fiddling, and drum-beating suite. Wednesday was a lovely May-day, and the streets of the metropolis profited by it. Jack-in-the-green had been seldom seen clad in greener or gayer colours, and rarely has he been followed by a more numerous or laughing cortège. Every lane and alley – hotbeds of population – poured out its juvenile and imitating admirers after him.

The Charter, 5 May 1839, page 230.

The picture featured this month is entitled “May Day or Jack in the Green” The artist and date are unknown 

Merry Yule

The Oak King copyright © Rose Blakeley

The Oak King copyright © Rose Blakeley

I would like to wish all our members a Merry Yuletide and a Happy Christmas. My thanks for all your support in the last year and my best wishes to you all for 2015.

My thanks to Rose Blakeley for sending us her wonderful picture above and poem below, perfect for our Yuletide post!


The Oak King

Come forth my king, through forests of snow

As the quiescent land, it freezes below,

For all life awaits for your lantern of light,

The winter to flee and the dark to ignite.

See how the thaw, it now does begin

As an emerald glow gleams from your luminous skin

And your cascading cloak of acorn and oak,

At its touch, an awakening, it does provoke.

Bring white waxing moons, my clement king,

Unfurl the leaf bud, herald the spring,

Summon the blossom, the sweet flowers of May,

Turn the axis of time this mid-winter day.

Cast down your eyes of green on the soil,

So the snowdrop, from slumber, will slowly uncoil

To face a warm sun, and an amiable breeze,

As you relish your reign amongst the viridescent trees.

By Rose Blakeley



The Company of the Green Man e-newsletter 11 December 2014

e-newsletter 11

The Company of the Green Man’s eleventh e-newsletter  has just been published and is available free to all our members via the members area tab at the top right of this page. If you are a member you should receive an e-mail with details of how to access the  e-newsletter. If not please don’t hesitate to contact me using the Contact us tab above.

And a reminder that our fantastic new members badge is now available, just click on the Members Badge tab above.

If you would like to join The Company of the Green Man (it’s completely free) just use the join us tab at the top of this page.

Book of the Month – December



Our book of the month for December is “The Green Man in Britain” by Fran & Geoff Doel

It is available via  The Company of the Green Man’s Amazon bookshop by clicking on the picture above or using  THIS LINK

If you buy your green man books via our Amazon links you pay nothing extra but a small referral fee may go towards the Company of the Green Man. This helps us to keep our website and membership free for all our members. In fact anything you purchase from Amazon after going through one of the links may be eligible to earn us a small referral fee so please consider doing so whenever you are planning to shop at Amazon.