[Sca-cooks] Lent Approaches

Johnna Holloway johnna at sitka.engin.umich.edu
Sun Jan 27 16:23:07 PST 2008

Sorry to play spoiler. I looked this up and it's probably more urban 
myth or folklore than period.

"The most famous, at Olney (Buckinghamshire) claims as its origin
that back in 1445 a woman rushed off to church on hearing the shriving
bell, still holding her frying pan. Its real age is hard to establish.
It is not mentioned in Wright and Lones, which must mean not only that
it was not held in the 1930s but that there were no references to it in
older works. What is certain is that soon after the Second World War the
vicar ‘revived’ it..."

They point out that they made it nicely 500 years 1445-1945.... which
makes the dating even more suspect.

"pancake races" /A Dictionary of English Folklore/. Jacqueline Simpson
and Steve Roud. Oxford University Press, 2000. /Oxford Reference Online/.


Christine Seelye-King wrote:
> snipped 
> I have a hard time believing this story isn't apocryphal, but I have found
> it in several areas and it does sound like a good activity for the class:
> In England there are several celebrations on this day but perhaps the best
> known one is the Pancake Day Race at Olney in Buckinghamshire which has been
> held since 1445. The race came about when a woman cooking pancakes heard the
> shriving bell summoning her to confession. She ran to church wearing her
> apron and still holding her frying pan, and thus without knowing it, started
> a tradition that has lasted for over five hundred years. 
> So, whatcha think?
> Christianna

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