Hey readers, this post is about a celebration from way back. Woo! Party? Well not exactly, I’m afraid this is a little different than what you imagined. The celebration of the green wolf marks an ancient custom that observes the times way back when wolves, outlaws and you guessed it, werewolves would hide in the fields, sometimes camouflaging themselves with green leaves, moss or whatever else was on hand for them to use.
You see, when it came time to harvest their fields, farmers would walk them and find what they thought were “werewolf nests.” These nests were thought to be where a werewolf had trampled down the crop to make a comfy sleeping spot (if you have ever been in a field you may have seen this before, deer do this quite often). In many parts of France it was common for parents to warn their children too stay away from crops, to not play in them for the loup-garou (werewolf) may find and kill them.
Back to the celebration – in a part of France called Normandy, le loup vert, the green wolf, is chosen each year to dance at the head of the other members of the farming community during the harvest festival. The grand finale of this dance is when a group of very large and burly farmers pretend to throw the green wolf (the man who has been chosen to play the part of the wolf at next year’s observance) into the roaring bonfire. This burning of the green wolf, the wolf covered in leaves and moss, would symbolize the farmers’ victory over hidden evils and menaces in their land that could one day possibly threaten their families or their crops.
So I suppose, in a way it’s like a pep rally against werewolves. Strange the things people used to do to keep away werewolves, right?