Bealtaine was historically a Gaelic festival celebrated in Ireland, Scotland and the Isle of Man. Bealtaine and Samhain were the leading terminal dates of the civil year in medievalIreland, though the latter festival was the more important. The festival regained popularity during the Celtic Revival and remains observed in the Celtic Nations and the Irish diaspora.
In Irish Gaelic, themonth of May is known as Mí Bhealtaine or Bealtaine, and the festival as Lá Bealtaine ('day of Bealtaine' or, 'May Day'). In Scottish Gaelic, the month is known as either, Cèitean or a' Mhàigh, andthe festival is known as Latha Bealltainn or simply Bealltainn. The feast was also known as Céad Shamhain or Cétshamhainin from which the word Céitean derives. Beltane was formerly spelled 'Bealtuinn'in Scottish Gaelic; in Manx it is spelt 'Boaltinn' or 'Boaldyn'. In Modern Irish, Oidhche Bealtaine or Oíche Bealtaine is May Eve, and Lá Bealtaine is May Day. Mí na Bealtaine, or simply Bealtaine isthe name of the month of May.
In Neopaganism, Bealtaine is considered a cross-quarter day, marking the midpoint in the Sun's progress between the spring equinox and summer solstice. The astronomicaldate for this midpoint is closer to 5 May or 7 May, but this can vary from year to year
Yule or Yuletide is a winter festival that was initially celebratedby the historical Germanic people as a pagan religious festival, though it was later absorbed into, and equated with, the Christian festival of Christmas. The festival was originally celebrated fromlate December to early January on a date determined by the lunar Germanic calendar. The festival was placed on December 25 when the Christian calendar was adopted. Scholars have connected thecelebration to the Wild Hunt.
Terms with an etymological equivalent to "Yule" are still used in the Nordic Countries for the Christian Christmas, but also for other religious holidays of the season. In...