It's All Greek to Me

Last night marked my final Lantern Night ceremony as an undergraduate. The second of our four annual traditions, Lantern Night is perhaps our most iconic. During the event, first-years file into the pitch-black Cloisters, sing a couple songs in Greek, and receive their lanterns, their light of knowledge, if you will. My Lantern Night was on Halloween (!), but the following year I participated in the event as a "runner" - sophomores who literally sprint through aisles of first-years to distribute lanterns. This was my first time observing the procession from the roof of the Cloisters. Watching Lantern Night is not unlike a college football marching band - it's highly synchronized and quite elaborate. While it is our oldest tradition, it's also one of the harder ones to explain. As I always say on my Admissions tours, no matter how many times I explain it, I can never quite capture the beauty and, for lack of a better term, magic of it all. For me, Lantern Night symbolizes Bryn Mawr's self-sustaining environment that is governed solely by women, eternally guiding each other towards a common goal of equality and inclusion.

Lantern Night 2011 - I had to run and deliver lanterns in the snow! Not ideal conditions, but still beautiful. The long exposure time of this photo is deceptive - it really is total darkness!

Lantern Night 2011 - I had to run and deliver lanterns in the snow! Not ideal conditions, but still beautiful. The long exposure time of this photo is deceptive - it really is total darkness!

Lantern Night 2010 & 2013

Lantern Night 2010 & 2013

One thought on “It's All Greek to Me

  1. Beautiful Banter Poppit,

    You forgot to mention the black robes and the phantasmagorical synchronization of the lanterns swinging. Seriously, this is such a special tradition. The little Red Babies Lanterns were glowing so vividly-- I'm proud to be their sister class. Odds til I die!

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