Saturday March 12 2011
is the most international of national days, celebrated from America and from China to Australia. There’s an old saying that March comes in like a lion, and out like a lamb. Its suppose to snow here in Ireland for St.Patricks day emm lovely well at least its not a tsunami i suppose.
In theory, Paddy’s Day could be moved. After all, the Catholic Church swaps other feist days when it suits them so why not “Paddys Day”?
Legend has it that St Patrick died on March 17, 461, but we’re not really sure it more like ‘pick a number, any number’. It was given a slot on the calendar of saint’s days in the 1600s.
In practice, St Patrick’s Day can’t be moved because it’s become such a world fixture that it’s no longer ours. We share it with so many places across the globe. March 17th is a public holiday, Patrick a man who might have been born in Wales or Scotland or elsewhere, and whose real name was Maewyn Succat.
Ireland’s first St Patrick’s day Parade took place in Dublin in 1931. New York claims that it held the world’s first parade in 1762, and Boston claim they had one even before this, but that was really just a big punch up!
St Patrick’s association with green is just a couple of centuries old. For years the colour of St Patrick’s day was blue and St Patrick’s Day did not become a public holiday here until 1903 when the Westminster Parliament passed a bill introduced by the Irish MP James O’Mara. Twenty years later, O’Mara would do his best to ruin the day for millions. With Independence, the new political elite made a ban on Paddy’s Day pub opening. James O’Mara led the way as chief killjoy. In support, one TD said “the drowning of the shamrock” was “a direct insult to the Saint” that must be stopped. This went on for a little while untill the publicans realized that they could’nt do this and there was no real law stoping them from serving on Paddys day.