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Here we see the rite of bringing in the sacred mistletoe, and showing a group of Druids or Celtic priests in richly decorated ceremonial robes and insignia proceeding down a steep hillside in solemn procession. The mistletoe, cut from the sacred oak by a golden sickle held by the chief druid, is ceremoniously received by subordinates in white raiment and borne home reverently on the backs of the white bulls. Mistletoe is significant as a plant revered by the druids for its magical as well as medicinal properties. In the 1890s there was a revival of interest in Celtic art and folklore; the influence of this can be seen in the use of complex intertwining patterns on the priests' robes and also on the pattern work of the frame.
oil on canvas
H 152.4 x W 152.4 cm