I have spent a few days in Sevilla (wonderful Spanish city) and as I was coming out of the cathedral I realized there was an Irish pub in front of it and people were wearing green hats and were drinking green beer!! I immediately remembered that it was St. Patrick’s day, the patron of Ireland, which is celebrated on the 17th March. For all of you who didn’t know about it, here you are some information:
St. Patrick was born in Wales in 389 AD and he came from a Christian family. When he was 16 years old he was captured by Irish raiders and taken to Ireland where he became a slave. After six years, he escaped to France by ship and he became a priest.
He returned to Ireland as a bishop in 432 AD. His missionary work was very successful as he converted most of the Irish to Christianity and introduced the Roman alphabet to Ireland.
There are many legends about St. Patrick. One of them says that he banished all the serpents from Ireland and that’s the reason why you will never find sepents in the country. Another legend says that he used a shamrock (a clover) to teach the Irish about the Trinity, and it has become a symbol of Ireland and the Irish.
St. Patrick died in 461 (probably on 17th March) and his tomb at Downpatrick is a centre of pilgrimage since then.
St. Patrick’s day is celebrated both in and outside Ireland, mainly in the United States, due to the fact that during the 1800’s thousands of Irish immigrants went to America. That day, there is a big parade where American and Irish people wear green clothing and many shops and restaurants are decorated with Irish flags and shamrocks in honour of the Irish. Even the Chicago river is dyed green each year for the St. Patrick’s Day celebration.
This is the Chicago river in green:
The parade and important people: