The Wading of the Sun

There is an old custom, almost dead now. It is only in hidden and unfrequented spots that it still survives – I mean ‘the wading of the sun.’ It was common enough thirty years ago. The modus operandi was as follows :- As the sun rose on Easter morn, a bucket of water was placed in such a position that the sun was reflected in it. If the sun waded, i.e. glimmered in the water, it would rain that day; but if it kept fine in the morning and rained in the afternoon, then the spring would be fine and the autumn wet, and vice versa. On this morning too the flight of crows was carefully observed; if they settled near home, instead of flying far afield to feed, the farmer shook his head, for they plainly told him, by doing so, that grub and other pests would sorely afflict his crops that year.

Yorkshire Wit, Character, Folklore & Customs

R. Blakeborough 1911

Published by W. Rapp & Son Ltd. Dundas St. Saltburn by the Sea


1925. A Staithes Man

..Interested in archaeology, he had been busy digging at a Roman camp with W.H. whom he seemed delighted to tease and mystify. One day he told W.H. that it would rain. He knew for certain but refused to give reasons. Whilst at work they were accosted by a farmer who hailed the Staithes man with the news that the curlews were calling for rain, whereupon W.H. was enlightened.

A Man of the Moors. Extracts from the diaries and letters of Frank Elgee.

Edited by Harriet W. Elgee

Roseberry Publications 1991

S skies