Every year on March 17th we celebrate St. Patrick’s day, but do most of us know the history behind St. Patrick’s Day? We probably did at some point, but it has slipped from our memory. Well, the Irish have been celebrating this day for over a 1,000 years! It is the religious feast day and anniversary of the death of St. Patrick dating back to the fifth century. St. Patrick was a key influencer in converting the pagan Irish into Christians, supposedly converting several thousands. With the conversion of so many people, St. Patrick had many legends around him and became one of Ireland’s most well-known saints. Even though Ireland is where St. Patrick did all of his work, the day is observed by many religions all around the world.
Here are some fun facts about St. Patrick’s Day
1. Wearing Green – It is customary to wear green and shamrock related paraphernalia. The green is not because it is in the Irish flag or because the countryside is so lush in green color. The shamrock is green and it is believed that St. Patrick used this three-leaved plant to explain the Holy Trinity. Many times when you see St. Patrick portrayed in pictures you will see a cross in one hand and a shamrock in the other.
2. Parades – this is a newer tradition upon which the Irish themselves did not do until the 20th century. The parades are really a way for everyone to come together as most parades have a variety of organizations in them.
3. The food and drink! – Let’s be honest, who doesn’t enjoy a good pint of stout. Ireland is known for their amazing ability to brew Guinness and when people think of Ireland they either think Guinness or Waterford. Meat pies are also a well-known staple in the Irish diet. So if you head out this St. Patrick’s day for an authentic Irish meal, make sure to try one of these delicious dishes.
Enjoy yourself this St. Patrick’s Day or St. Patty’s Day and now you know why we celebrate this day every year!
Photos by our clients: James and Christine Sterganos on their Best of Ireland 14 Day tour.
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