St. Patrick’s Day is the Catholic feast day of the patron saint of Ireland – it is interesting how many traditions have originated from this small regional religious holiday. It has grown from a Christian observance to a worldwide day of celebration – and although less than 5 million people currently live in Ireland, it is said that “everyone is Irish on St. Patrick’s Day”! Here at Boyd’s Flowers, we thought we would share a little about the unique story of this holiday, as well as to remind you that when it comes to dressing up your home, office or party with green for St. Patrick’s Day, there is no place more festive than Boyd’s Flowers!
The patron saint of Ireland, St. Patrick (born Maewyn Succat in the 4th century) was actually from Great Britain. He was brought to Ireland as a captive of pirates; and although he was subsequently released safely, he returned to Ireland as a missionary after becoming a Catholic priest. He is credited with bringing Christianity to the largely pagan nation, although he did not rid the country of snakes – a popular myth. The holiday is an observance of his death and came to America via millions of Irish immigrants in the 1700’s and 1800’s.
The first St. Patrick’s Day parade was in the mid-1700s, although there is some discrepancies as to whether it took place in New York City or Boston, both cities full of Irish immigrants.
Famous Symbols: The shamrock is an iconic image on St. Patrick’s Day, but it is sometimes mistaken as a four-leaf clover. In truth, Patrick used the very common three-leaf clover to teach children about the doctrine of the Trinity. You will definitely need the “luck o’ the Irish” to get your hands on the 4-leaf variety – you’ll find only one of these special plants for every 10,000 clover stems. As for the fabled leprechaun, they have an odd resume. These legendary creatures are both magical fairies and shoemakers – perhaps you need sturdy shoes when hiking to the end of the rainbow for your pot of gold.
Whether you wear green, drink green beer, or eat corned beef cabbage, St. Patrick’s Day is enjoyed by all. Send some of your Celtic friends a bit of green with a floral design from Boyd’s Flowers – in Wilmington, no matter your nationality, on March 17th we are all Irish!