Lammas: First Harvest
Lammas falls on August 1, or around August 6 if it is honored when the sun is at fifteen degrees of Leo. Lammas is known as the first harvest, or grain harvest; its name is derived from “loaf mass” because it was the day when the ancient people were again able to eat fresh bread. It is a time to honor the abundance of the earth.
Lammas is also known as Lughnasadh (pronounced Loo-nah-sah), the wake of the god Lug's mother, or in some circles, the wake of the god who died at Midsummer (although in some traditions he dies at Samhain). Celtic Lughnasadh celebrations were marked by fire festivals and the Tailltean games, which featured contests, races, and feasts. Couples were joined in “trial marriages,” which would then be renewed a year later or dissolved, depending on the wishes of the couple and whether or not they had conceived a child during that year.
The colors of Lughnasadh are browns, reds, and oranges—the colors of late summer and early fall. Grains such as barley and wheat, and offerings of baked goods are appropriate for the altar. In addition to invoking Lug, it would be appropriate to call Inanna. This sabbat is fairly god-centric; however, the Great Mother or the Goddess can be invited to the celebration in lieu of a specific goddess.