Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
Many people around the world celebrate St. Patrick’s Day on March 17th. We wear green and silly buttons that say “Kiss Me, I’m Irish,” teach children to try to catch a Leprechaun to get his pot of gold, but what does it all mean?
Who is Saint Patrick? Saint Patrick was born in Britain in the 4th century AD. When he was a young man, he was kidnapped and sent to Ireland to become a slave. He managed to escape and go home to his family, but later returned to Ireland to bring the religion of Christianity to the Irish people.
So, why green? Many wear green and the symbol of the shamrock to show support to Ireland to break away from British control in the 18th century AD. Britain was known for the color blue as was shown on much of the traditional clothing of the time. The Irish Rebels also took on the shamrock to show their love of the Holy Trinity and Christianity.
What about the snakes? Legend says that St. Patrick was famed for ridding Ireland of all snakes; however, there is no historical proof of this. (I would still welcome him to my home to get rid of those critters!)
What came next? When early Irish settlers came to America, they brought their traditions with them and started some new ones in their new homes. One such tradition was the St. Patrick’s Day Parade which seems to have been started in Boston, Massachusetts in 1737. Today, you can go to nearly any city in America and celebrate with an official (or unofficial) St. Patrick’s Day Parade.
Who are the Leprechauns? Ah..these mischievous little people are known for their riches and tom foolery. Legend has it that they like to sneak up on people and pinch them! Ooh those little rascals. Don’t fear, however, wearing green makes you invisible to them! I have my green shirt on, do you?
If you would like to learn more about St. Patrick’s Day, check out the links below: