- A Bone Fire: Made of clean bones and no wood and was thought to keep dragons at bay due to the smell. This is where we get our word 'bonfire from although hopefully there are no bones present!
- A Wake Fire: Made of clean wood and no bones used to socialise or 'wake' by.
- A St John's Fire: Made of clean wood and bones. St John is often pronounced 'sin-jon' which perhaps provides us with the origins of the word 'singe'
Today few midsummer fires remain although the Old Cornwall Society resurrected the custom of lighting fires across the tors of Cornwall back in the 1920's and thankfully it still continues today. I will be there next week and, next Wednesday just as dusk descends, I will raise a glass to the old ones. (Read more in 'Mrs Darley's Pagan Whispers)