text, in part: “As it was considered unlucky to cut the last sheaf of the
harvest, the growing stems were plaited into a corn dolly and felled by the
reapers’ thrown sickles. The dolly was then dressed and garlanded, carried home in procession and kept through the
winter in the farmhouse or church to ensure a good harvest next year. The
custom was a survival of pagan rites[….] These appeased the corn spirit or
fertility goddess who took her final refuge in the last sheaf.
"Variously called the kirn baby, the mare, hag or maiden, the dolly
was woven into many elaborate shapes.”