Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Because I'm an all-things-Irish loving, History nerd...

Happy Saint Patrick's Day, everyone!!

This is my 2nd favorite holiday, coming up just behind Christmas. I love an excuse to wear my favorite color: green, to get in touch with my 1/4 Irish heritage, to chow down on Irish soda bread and I get to rock out the The Pogues, The Young Dubliners and Flogging Molly without getting too many odd looks from my coworkers. Today is also a fabulous excuse to drink too much beer, throw back a few Irish car bombs (my fave!) and get a tad too loud with good friends...all for the sake of Ireland (supposedly)!

But, I also love this holiday because we get to celebrate Ireland and the country's wonderfully colorful history. I know, I know, I'm showing my true colors as a nerd here, but I just can't help myself. I love Irish history and folklore!

So, here are just a few historical tidbits about Saint Patrick's Day for you file away in your never know when you might need a bit of trivia:

- Saint Patrick was actually Romano-British, but was kidnapped by Irish raiders and taken to Ireland as a slave when he was young. He later escaped, but believed he was called back by God to save the pagan Irish.

- The shamrock, which typically has only 3 leaves and has become the symbol of Saint Patrick's Day (and Ireland), is believed to have been used by Saint Patrick to explain the Holy Trinity to the pre-Christian Irish.

- Blue was originally the color associated with Saint Patrick and this holiday.

- Outside of Dublin, Ireland's biggest Saint Patrick's Day celebrations are in Downpatrick, County Down where the saint is rumored to be buried.

- Chicago has dyed it's river green every Saint Patrick's Day since 1962.

- On March 17, 1776, George Washington issued General Orders from Cambridge, MA stating that the password for the day would be "Boston" and its reply would be "Saint Patrick".

- Saint Patrick's Day is believed to have been celebrated in Ireland since before the 1600's as a break in the Lenten season for the Irish Catholics, but wasn't officially recognized as a public holiday until 1903.

- The first recorded Saint Patrick's Day parade in the world was organized by the Irish Society of Boston and held on March 18, 1737 in (obviously) Boston, MA.

I hope everyone is wearing their green and enjoys this fun holiday! And, if you are participating in the beer guzzling be safe!

(source for historical facts)


  1. I love all the St. Patrick's Day facts you've featured here, my love! Who knew that blue was the color originally associated with the holiday? So fun!

    Hope your day was fabulous!! :)

  2. Hope you enjoyed this holiday yesterday!!

  3. Thank you for the great facts! And i hope you don't mind if I steal that little blessing sticker because I LOVE it!

  4. I thoroughly enjoyed the history lesson!!
    I spent many a St. Patrick's Days in Boston...drinking green beer and they even serve green eggs at the Lucky Shamrock in the financial district/faneuil hall starting really early so people could go before work!!
    HOpe you celebrated well! :)


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