Well, I never really knew anything about St. Patrick’s Day other than you got pinched if you weren’t wearing green and that it had something to do with a little Irish Leprechaun.
Well, there is actually a lot more to the holiday and the traditions we know now.
Who’s St. Patrick Anyway? His birth name was Maewyn Succat. He changed his name to Patricius after becoming a priest. He was born in Britain in 387 and died on March 17, 461 in County Down, Ireland. That’s right he was British not Irish! So why is this is such a huge Irish holiday? Well, supposedly when St. Patrick was 16 he was kidnapped by Irish raiders and taken as a slave to Ireland. He “found God” while working as a shepherd there. Later he escaped his captors and fled back home, became a Catholic priest and eventually returned to Ireland where he spent the remainder of his life teaching pagan Irishmen about Christianity.
St. Patrick Artist Unknown
So what’s with the Three-Leaved Clover? Yes THREE-leaved clover, not the lucky four-leaved clover that is sometimes mistakenly used. Anyway, St. Patrick used the three-leaved clover to explain the Holy Trinity to the Irish pagans. It was sort of a symbol of the three entities the Father, Son & Holy Spirit.
Green…Huh??? The crazy thing is that St. Patrick was more likely to be seen wearing a light shade of blue, a color associated with the British orders. The color green became the holiday’s signature color after the Irish independence movement in the late 18th century. It is also suggested that the color green stuck because of the lush green of the Ireland landscape, the color of the clover or the green in the Ireland flag.
Leprechauns and getting pinched…well this is more of an American tradition then Irish. The legend is that the Leprechaun’s wear all green and pinch anyone who doesn’t dress in this way as a sign of disapproval.
St. Patty’s Day a Dry Holiday…What? Yep, St. Patrick’s Day was originally a religious holiday celebrating missionaries around the world. And because it was a strict religious holiday during Lent, all the Pub’s in town were closed! No Beer!!! Boy, times sure have changed!
Green Beer Photo By : http://egotvonline.com/2012/03/16/25-photos-of-green-beer/
Now that’s such a small snippet of all of the fun St. Patty’s Day facts. I could go on and on. Such fun exploring these crazy traditions!