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St. Patrick's Day, Dublin, Ireland

St. Patrick's Day, Dublin

March 17th (St. Patrick's Day) marks the day in circa 457 AD when Saint Patrick died and took his story to the grave. Since, the only known details of his life come from two handwritten letters sent by Patrick to himself, the rest propagated through myth. We know that Saint Patrick was born in England and was kidnapped from his home by Irish Raiders at the age of 16. After six years as a slave, God visited him in a dream and encouraged him to escape. With that divine vision, he broke free and returned to his English family in order to carry God’s mission back to Ireland . In addition to crediting Saint Patrick with the spreading of Christianity to the Irish pagans, ancient legend holds that he also drove all the snakes out of the entire nation. Old Irish folklore also tells us the Saint would use a three-leafed shamrock to explain the Holy Trinity—the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost. It is then unmistakable how his Irish legacy remains so strong to this day.

Conceived of initially as a religious feast in the ninth century, St. Patrick’s Day took a thousand years to become an official holiday in 1901, with the first parade occurring in 1931. It wasn't until 1995 that it became a government-sponsored, four-day festival. Talk about late blooming! But well prior to the St. Patrick’s legitimization, international celebrations have long been going strong, heartily supporting the export of Irish alcohol and green pride.

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