Folklorist Seosamh Ó Dálaigh from Dún Chaoin, County Kerry, talks about customs and folklore relating to Shrove Tuesday and Lent. Comhrá maidir le béaloideas agus tradisiúin a bhaineann le Máirt na hInide agus Carghas i nDún Chaoin.

Pancakes weren’t eaten on Shrove Tuesday, according to Seosamh Ó Dálaigh, but people did cook themselves a nice meal the night before Lent started, in preparation for the six weeks of fasting and abstinence that took place prior to Easter.

In days gone by, Catholic weddings were not permitted to take place during Lent, so often there was a rush to get married on Shrove Tuesday, as it could be a long wait until Easter.  Indeed, as Ó Dálaigh says here, a match was often made on the preceding Sunday, and people got married on Shrove Tuesday. 

Unmarried men were the butt of jokes and mockery in that part of the Kerry Gaeltacht, and bachelors were rounded up with the intention of dispatching them to Skellig Mór on Shrove Tuesday night, with the oldest one designated as captain of the boat. 

Songs of an unkind nature were also composed about them in the locality,

Chuala ceann acu i mBearla...daoine a bhí in aois a phósta agus nár phós...ambaiste níor bhíodh rudaí ro-dheas ráite mar gheall ar na daoine sin.

Tobacco was the thing most people gave up for Lent and they would also abstain from eating meat on Wednesdays and Fridays. 

‘Fáilte’ was an Irish language arts series which ran from 1981 to 1983.  It was produced by Prionsias Mac Aonghusa.  Presenters included Elva Nic Phaidín, Breandán Feiritear, Padraig Ó Catháin, Mícheál Ó hUanacháin,  Prionsias Mac Aonghusa, Padhraic Ó Ciardha, Breandán Ó hEithir, and Gráinne Uí Mhaitiú.

This episode of ‘Fáilte’ was broadcast on 23 February 1982.  The presenter was Breandán Feiritear.