For as long as humans have cultivated food crops, they have battled birds. The very earliest farmers devised ways of keeping birds from eating their crops, and the scarecrow was born. The first known scarecrows date to almost 5000 years ago. Many civilizations have used scarecrows or "bird-scarers." They include the ancient Egyptians, Greeks, Romans, Chinese, and Japanese. Native Americans used them before the time of Columbus.
Most scarecrows have been quite similar over time and across cultures. They almost always resembled a human figure, dressed in old clothing of the time and stuffed with straw or hay. They have had many different names, in many different languages. Some English variations are hodmedod, murmet, hay-man, tattie bogal (or bogle), mommet, or mawkin. In Scots Gaelic they were bodach-rocais, meaning "old man of the rooks". In Wales, a scarecrow was a bwbach. Other names have included flay-crow, mawpin, mog, shay, guy, shuft, rook-scarer, kelson, and bebegig. A quick online search will give you names in other languages. Espantapájaros in Spanish. Kakashi in Japanese. Madáríjeszto in Hungarian.
So, you can be a scarecrow from almost any era or locale. Create your own costume mashup. Start with a historic or ethnic costume, add our straw accessory, and you're set. Then look up the scarecrow name in the appropriate language.
Scarecrows have figured in books, music, movies and comics. The oldest surviving book in Japan, from the year 712 AD, describes a scarecrow. And, of course, everyone is familiar with the Scarecrow from The Wizard of Oz, who went with Dorothy down the Yellow Brick Road. There are several different comic-book villains called Scarecrow. The best known is in the Batman Dark Knight movie trilogy. You can become any of them in one of our licensed costumes! To be the Scarecrow from Oz, learn his signature song "If I Only Had A Brain." If you'd rather join Batman's rogue's gallery as an Arkham Asylum doctor, learn the names of some phobias. And practice speaking in nursery rhymes.
If you're going to dress as a tattie bogal, choose one of our many generic Scarecrow costumes. We have styles and sizes to fit anyone, adult or child, male or female. Then have fun with some of the different scarecrow names. When your friends say, "Oh, you're a scarecrow," you can respond, "no, I'm not. I'm a hodmedod!" (or a mawkin, or a bwbach, or whichever name you like best).