Hi friends!

What do you know about the traditions of St. Patrick’s Day?

Here is a bit about it.

St. Patrick’s Day is a holiday full of traditions that honors and celebrates all things Irish. Every year, on March 17th, people dress up in green, look for shamrocks, and set traps to catch the elusive Mr. Leprechaun. Yes, this day is also called St. Paddy’s Day.

There are so many traditions, events, legends, and history about St. Patrick’s that we will talk about them in three posts. This is part 1.

But who is the Leprechaun?

Leprechauns are Irish fairies; the original Celt name for these little people is Lobaircin, meaning ‘small-bodied fellow.’ 

According to the myth, Leprechauns were two-foot-tall redheaded people with pointy ears dressed in green and used their magic powers to serve good or evil. The myth states that Leprechauns were responsible for mending the other fairies’ shoes. 

Leprechauns were known for their trickery. They carried a big stick called a shillelagh, which they used to scare anyone who tried to steal their gold. They preferred to be alone and spent their time either making shoes or searching for more gold they would hide at the end of the rainbow.

The belief is that tiny Leprechauns are very hard to catch because they are so small—but if you can catch one, the leprechaun will grant you three wishes in exchange for setting him free.

These myths and legends go far before Saint Patrick’s and are part of the Irish culture’s DNA.

This is also why so many traditions are related to Leprechauns and the color green.

Irish Traditions

Leprechauns are why you should wear green on St. Patrick’s Day—or risk getting pinched! This tradition is tied to the legend that reads that Leprechauns were hard to find because they were always dressed in green; therefore, they were invisible, considering Ireland is the Emerald Island. 

So, Leprechauns liked to pinch everything they could see that was not green. If they see you, they pinch you.

Another tradition reads that green is a color tied to good luck, like the four-leaf shamrock.

People traditionally eat corned beef and cabbage on Saint Patrick’s Day, yummy!

This is a nice tradition: On Saint Patrick’s Day, there are parades with dancers and bagpipers. The St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Boston, Massachusetts, U.S., is especially popular for this.

Shamrocks are another tradition. The legend says you will get good luck if you find a four-leaf one. The Irish have worn shamrocks, the national flower of Ireland, for centuries.

Modern Traditions

There are so many fun traditions, you should get ready.

1. Leprechaun Traps: I guess you would like to trap one of these trickery fairies. If you do it, the little fellow must grant you three wishes.

2. Wear green or be pinched.

3. Bake cookies and cupcakes with green decorations

4. Have a Leprechaun party.

5. School parades.

Stay tuned. Part 2 is coming.

Sources: history.com, británica.com, nationalgeographic.com