Happy St Patrick’s Day to our lovely readers! In honour of this annual celebration, here are 10 facts we bet you don’t know about St Paddy’s Day (like green wasn’t even his colour!)
1. St Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland. But his birthplace is not known, and many believe he was a Welshman.
2. He was captured at 16 and taken and held as a slave in Ireland, where he spent 10 years herding sheep before escaping back to Britain.
3. The shamrock was originally used as a teaching tool by St Patrick, who used the three-leaved plant to explain the mystery of the Holy Trinity (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) to the pagan Irish.
4. Blue was originally associated with St Patrick’s Day as it was the colour of the saint’s vestments. Green – the colour we now use to commemorate St Patrick’s Day – comes from the links with the shamrock.
5. In 2010, the Sydney Opera House was bathed in green light to mark the 200th anniversary of St Patrick’s Day. St Patrick’s Day was first marked in Sydney in 1810.
6. Every year in Chicago, many rivers are dyed green in honour of St Patrick’s Day.
7. Irish law made St Patrick’s Day a religious holiday in 1903 and from that year to 1970, most pubs were closed on that day.
8. In 1970, St Patrick’s Day was reclassified as a national holiday and is now associated with drinking the day away.
9. Around the world, 5.5 million pints of Guinness are downed daily. On St Paddy’s Day that figure is more than doubled.
10. Drowning The Shamrock is the Irish custom of floating a shamrock on the top of a shot of whiskey before drinking it. They believe doing this will lead to a prosperous year.
We hope you've discovered some new facts you didn't know before! We hope you all have an amazing St. Paddy's Day!