The Roman Catholic holiday celebrating St. Patrick’s Day March 17th was & still is intended as a day of celebrating spiritual renewal & a day of prayer for missionaries the world over. St. Patrick is the Patron Saint of Ireland known for converting many Pagans to Christianity. St. Patrick's Day is a national holiday in Ireland & the island of Montserrat in the Caribbean, which was founded by Irish refugees. It is a bank holiday in Northern Ireland & a provincial holiday in the Canadian province of Newfoundland. That is common knowledge. Updated interesting facts & trivia about St. Patrick's Day below...
1 ~ St. Patrick the patron saint of Ireland was not born in Ireland, by all accounts he was born in Britain around 385 AD & died March 17, 461 AD. His parents Calpurnius & Conchessa were Roman citizens living in either Scotland or Wales, according to different versions of his story. St. Patrick is buried in Glastonbury where the Chapel of St. Patrick still stands.
2 ~ Although St. Patrick was known for having converted many Celtic Druids & Pagans to Christianity, he considered himself a Pagan until he was 16. He was taken captive by a roving band of Irish raiders & forced to work as a shepherd. Although his father was a deacon & his grandfather had been a priest the future saint was not a child of faith when he was taken captive. Sleeping outside with the animals he cared for his captivity brought forth a spiritual reawakening in him. Amidst Ireland's beautiful forests & mountains he turned to God for support & solace. Once he returned home he became a devout Christian missionary.
3 ~ The Shamrock a green three-leaf clover came to symbolize Ireland & became popular after the story that Saint Patrick used the Shamrock to teach the people of Ireland about the Trinity. While Shamrock Green is the color associated with St. Patrick’s Day, his chosen color was actually blue. Green was even considered an unlucky color in Ireland until the 19th century. Most images of St. Patrick dating before the 20th century show him donning blue garments. Today wearing green, eating green food & even drinking green beer is said to commemorate St. Patrick's use of the Shamrock.
4 ~ Miracles & Legends surround St. Patrick’s having driven snakes out of Ireland, but evidence suggests post glacial Ireland never had any snakes in the first place. It is believed that the snakes were simply a metaphor relating to the Pagans that he helped convert.
5 ~ FAVORITE IRISH BLESSINGS ~
6 ~ St. Patrick’s given name was Maewyn Succat. St. Patrick's name was changed to Patricius meaning "Father Of The Citizens".
7 ~ St. Patrick was said to have proclaimed that everyone should have a drop of the "Hard Stuff" on his feast day after chastising an innkeeper who served a short measure of whiskey. In the custom known as "Drowning The Shamrock", the shamrock that has been worn on a lapel or hat is put in the last drink of the evening. Although a widely celebrated drinking holiday in the United States this was not the case in Ireland. In fact the pubs in Ireland were ordered closed in remembrance of St. Patrick’s Day until the 1970s.
8 ~ The traditional St. Patrick’s Day meal was Irish bacon & potatoes. Corned beef & cabbage was substituted as it was less expensive.
9 ~ The first St. Patrick's Day parade took place not in Ireland but in the United States. Irish soldiers serving in the British military marched through New York City on March 17, 1762. In 1780, General George Washington, who commanded soldiers of Irish descent in the Continental Army allowed his troops a holiday on March 17th “As an act of solidarity with the Irish in their fight for independence". Today, Dublin Ireland has a parade that attracts hundreds of thousands of people, while in Chicago the river is dyed green for a few hours. The biggest parade is normally held in New York, while the largest celebration in the southern hemisphere is in Sydney Australia.
10 ~ MARCH 17TH IS ALSO KNOW AS SAINT GERTRUDE OF NIVELLES DAY & MY BIRTHDAY ~
St. Gertrude was the Patron Saint of Cats, Gardeners & Herbalists. Fine weather on her feast day means it's time for planting. St. Gertrude was also patron of those seeking lodging because her monastery was known for its hospitality to travelers & pilgrims, especially the Irish missionaries. My Birthday is always a fabulous & fun holiday for us (including all our fur babies too)!
My beautiful 22 1/2" x 14 1/2" St. Gertrude Of Nivelles Painting is by my friend & talented artist Just Click:
Have fun & share your knowledge about these top ten facts & trivia about March 17th ~ St. Patrick’s Day & St. Gertrude's Day over your pints of Guinness or Green Beer.
Go Mbeannaí Dia Duit ~ Sláinte agus Táinte!
May God Bless You ~ Health & Wealth!