awthorne comes from the Anglo-Saxon word, haegthorn which means hedge thorn and the Old Saxon word haw which means hedge. Beginning May 13th and continuing through June 9th, the Celtic Tree Month of the Hawthorne takes place. For many years, the Hawthorne has lined the hedge groves of England. In the Middle Ages it was referred to as the May tree. It was called this because of the blooms that covered the tree during the month of May. Garlands of the blossoms were hung over doorways during the Beltane celebration.
The Hawthorne is part of the triad of faerie trees. Ash and Oak being the other two. They are said to represent the three realms of underworld, middle world, and upper world. All three trees are often used for the traditional Maypole which is an important part of the Beltane celebration. Hawthorne is also one of the nine sacred woods for a sabbat fire in which it represents purity.
Although the Hawthorne was highly celebrated during the month of May and Beltane, it was considered unlucky at any other time of the year. This was due largely to the early Christian church in its attempts to sway pagans away from their pagan ways. With the Hawthorne’s close ties to the faeries the priest would manipulate so called faerie pranks into evil misdeeds. Drawing the pagans away from the actual Beltane festivities was another thing, as it was a time to celebrate the sexual union of Goddess and God and sexuality in general. It was not as easy to convince the pagans to not participate.