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A Celtic holiday observed in Ireland, Isle of Man and Wales, the Irish tradition holds that the wren symbolizes the old year, while the robin symbolizes the year to come. To ensure that the passage from old year to new could take place, it was once common practice on December 26 for a group of local boys to hunt and kill a wren. This band of so-called Wren Boys, usually costumed and often masked, would then travel from house to house carrying the wren in a small box or casket (other sources say the wren was tied to a pole and decked with ribbons). The regaled each house with musical laments for the unfortunate bird along with pleas to raise money for the funeral.