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St. Patrick’s day, celebrated every year on March 17, is a holiday honoring the Irish patron saint of the same name.
Contrary to popular belief, the holiday is more than just wearing green. St. Patrick’s Day started in the Pagan religion, according to letters by Patrick himself stating he was captured and kept as a slave in Wales, Scotland and parts of Ireland.
The shamrock used for St. Patrick’s Day comes from Patrick drawing the Holy Trinity. The plant itself coincided with the No. 3 and root green color in the Pagan religion.
In America, however, the holiday started being celebrated around 1737 in Boston. New York followed in 1762 by a group of Irish soldiers in the British military. The holiday eventually turned into the holiday we know today.
Some traditions in the United States include parades, planting peas, heavy drinking, dying beer green (Chicago even dyes its river green for the holiday), wearing green to prevent being pinched and religious services.
Feasting on St. Patrick’s Day is also widely practiced including traditional Irish food like soda bread, shepherd’s pie, corned beef and corned cabbage. Let’s not forget some hold an Irish breakfast including sausage, black and white pudding, fried eggs and fried tomatoes.
While many only realize we’re close to St. Patrick’s Day by the timeframe that McDonald’s puts out the Shamrock Shake, Ireland and Irish communities continue to celebrate it with fervor and passion.
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