ORANGE AND CLOVES: It appears to have been the custom formerly, in
England, to make new year’s presents with oranges stuck full with
cloves. We read in one of Ben Jonson’s pieces,–the “Christmas
Masque,”–”He has an orange and rosemary, but not a clove to stick in
MRS. WILSON’S COOK BOOK 1920
In English communities it is the custom to sit up and watch the departing year out and to welcome in the new. The farmers in the north country visit the orchards, while the folk in the highlands visit and return calls.
The custom of New Year’s calling is very old indeed, and in the years of long ago the Beau Brummels and dandies of the times enjoyed the New Year’s calling as a very rare sport.
The mummers who are abroad this day follow the ancient custom of dear old Scotland, where these rites have prevailed for many centuries.
Toast the old year out and new one in with a loving cup:
Ring out the old with all its hate,
Ring in the new with love and cheer,
Ring on, oh bells of time;
Ring with joy, ere ye be too late.