Is it important that the original paraphernalia for the lottery had been lost? What do you suppose the original ceremony was like? Why have some of the villages given up this practice? Why hasn't this one?
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This is very important. There used to be costumes and song. The box used to symbolize part of an ornate tradition that was linked to the lottery. Its shabby condition tells us that the meanings and cultural importance of the lottery has died away. We are hinted that the lottery might have originally been some sacrifice for better crops. Old Man Warner says "Lottery in June, Corn be heavy soon." It is the only clue as to why the Lottery takes place. It would seem that the Lottery was used as a sacrifice to appease Gods for good crops. The only part of the once elaborate festivities that remains is the lottery and subsequent murder of the victim. Other villages have obviously seen the folly of killing an innocent person every year and stopped doing it.