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The Best Irish New Year’s Traditions and Irish New Year’s Blessings

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Firstly, a lot of these Irish New Year’s Traditions will surprise you. They did me, although some I not only knew but experienced growing up in Ireland.

Ah, the Irish New Year – a time steeped in traditions and sprinkled with blessings that have been passed down through generations, some dating back to the days of the Celts. To help you navigate these delightful customs, I’ve bullet-pointed a few Irish New Year traditions followed by some charming Irish New Year blessings.

As we gear up for 2024, let’s dive into these customs that have warmed Irish hearts for centuries.

Best Irish New Year’s Traditions And Irish New Year’s Blessings:

New years Irish party

Clean the House – In Ireland, we start the New Year with a clean slate… and a clean house! It’s an old belief that cleaning the house from top to bottom sweeps away the old year, making room for all the new year has to offer. And, as some would jest, “The house is so clean you could eat off the floor!” This ritual, deeply rooted in the idea of renewal and fresh starts, is a lovely tradition to adopt, no matter where in the world you are.

“Always remember to forget
The troubles that pass away.
But never forget to remember
The blessings that come each day.” ~ Irish Blessing

Set the Table for Those Who Passed Away – In a touching tribute to loved ones lost, many Irish families set an extra place at the table. It’s a beautiful way of honouring those no longer with us and keeping their memory alive as we enter the new year.

“May your pockets be heavy and your heart be light.
May good luck pursue you each morning and night.”

Open the front and back doors. This one’s a bit of a curiosity! At the stroke of midnight, it’s customary to open both the front and back doors of the house. This act is believed to let out the old year and welcome the new. While it might sound a bit drafty, it’s a tradition that’s full of symbolism. Have you ever tried this? Let me know in the comments below!

“May your heart be light and happy, may your smile be big and wide, and may your pockets always have a coin or two inside!” (This one’s my personal favourite Irish saying!)

The First Person to Leave Must Be a Man. Now, hold on, nothing sexist here! It’s an old belief that if a man (the more handsome, the better) leaves the house first after New Year, it brings good fortune. However, if a woman leaves first, it’s said to bring bad luck, especially if she has red hair. Curious, isn’t it? What do you think would happen if they left at the same time? 🫨😂

Irish Blessing: “Here’s to a long life and a merry one. A quick death and an easy one. A pretty girl and an honest one. A cold beer – and another one!” 

How do you dream of your future partner:

dreaming of your future partner

Single and ready to mingle? This might be the strangest tradition yet. Place mistletoe under your pillow, and you’re supposed to dream of your future partner. But remember, the effectiveness might depend on how much you’ve celebrated the night before!

So, what do you think of these Irish New Year’s traditions and blessings? Some might seem a bit dated, but they’re all part of our rich cultural tapestry.

As we step into the New Year, let’s carry these traditions and blessings in our hearts. And if you’re keen to dive deeper into the world of Irish sayings and lore, don’t forget to check out more on my site.

Wishing you all a joyful and prosperous New Year! And if you have any Irish new year blessings I forgot please comment below. 

Sláinte, Stephen

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Patricia Maria Attwood

Friday 31st of December 2021

I Love the New Years Tradition and the Blessing .I love your columm Thanks for the laughter and the history Wishing you and your family the best off health for 2022