May Folklore

May Moons

Full Moon on the 4th May;

  • Old English; Milk Moon
  • Native American; Flower Moon
  • Colonial; Milk Moon
  • Celtic; Bright Moon
  • Wiccan; Hare Moon
  • Pagan; Grass Moon

New Moon on the 18th May;

  • Old English; Flower Moon
  • Native American; Strawberry Moon
  • Colonial; Rose Moon
  • Celtic; Horses Moon
  • Wiccan; Dyad Moon
  • Pagab; Planting Moon


  • May is named for Maia Majestas, the Roman goddess of spring who encourages crops to grow. She is the chief goddess of the Seven Sisters or Pleiades. She can be equated with the Irish Queen Medb or Celtic Meave.  Hawthorm, her sacred plant, blossoms during this month.
  • Artemis, Diana, Faunus, Flora, and Pan also have dominion over this month.
  • The Anglo-Saxons called this month Thrimilcmonath, “thrice-milk month.” In England, May was also called Sproutkale. Winnemanoth, “joy month,” was the Frankish name, and the Asatru name is Merrymoon.
  • The Irish call May Bealtaine or an Ceitean, the first weather of summer. The two weeks before Bealtaine is ceitean earrach, spring May-time, and the two weeks after Bealtaine is ceitean samhradh, summer May-time.
  • Bealtaine, also associated the God Bel, means ‘the fires of Bel’.
  • The sun passes from Taurus to Gemini around May 21st.
  • Those born in May have the lilly of the valley for their birth flower.
  • The stone for the month of May, and for Taurus, is the emerald, though agate, chalcedony, and carnelian are sometimes mentioned for May instead, while Gemini lays claim to agate, particularly moss agate, and pearl.
  • Aquamarine, lapis lazuli, kunzite, rose quartz, and sapphire are associated with Taurus, and chrysoprase, sapphire, and topaz are connected to Gemini.

Weather Lore

  • A cold, wet May means a barn full of hay.
  • Set sage in May and it will grow always.
  • A windy May makes a fair year.
  • A snowstorm in May is worth a wagon-load of hay.

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