‘Beltane’ is a pre-Christian Celtic festival that occurs on or around May 1st (‘May Day’). It falls midway between Ēostre (Vernal Equinox) and Midsummer (Summer Solstice). Beltane marks the onset of Summer and lies opposite Samhain (‘Halloween’ and the traditional beginning of Winter).
Once celebrated throughout Europe, Beltane was suppressed by the Christians during the first millenium of the Common Era… Only traces come down to us, such as children’s May Pole dances. With the revival of ‘pagan’ and ‘wiccan’ sensibilities, these ancient festivals have enjoyed a rebirth in the British Isles, with a big annual ‘Beltane Fire Festival’ held annually in Edinburgh, Scotland.