Little Known Facts about St. Patrick’s Day

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Although green beer, Jamison shots, and other alcoholic libations may be the focus of St. Patrick’s Day, as it is said to bring good luck, there are some other reasons to imbibe on St. Patrick’s Day.

“Drowning the Shamrock,” is a custom that the Irish believe will bring you a very prosperous year on St. Patrick’s Day. So how do you do it? You float a shamrock in your shot of whiskey before you down it.

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Although everyone wears green for St. Patrick’s Day, so they don’t get pinched, it wasn’t St. Patrick’s color. He was partial to blue. The holiday, that celebrates Irelands history used to be a religious holiday, but when it became a day of celebration for the Irish, the colors became green. It was March 17 that the Irish soldiers dressed out in green uniforms to make a political statement during the Rebellion against the British in 1798.

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There are only three countries in the world where St. Patrick’s Day is an official public holiday. Ireland, of course, Newfoundland and Labrador, both provinces in Canada, and the Caribbean island of Montserrat that was founded by early Irish settlers.

St. Patrick’s Day is more associated with drinking than eating. However, about 30 billion pounds of corned beef and 3 billion pounds of cabbage are enjoyed every year, and that is just in the United States.

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Speaking of drinking, one percent of the entire world’s annual beer consumption occurs on March 17 with people drinking about 4.2 billion pints or 528 million gallons on St. Patrick’s Day.

Many things that people enjoy on St. Patrick’s Day are not traditional. People gorge themselves on corned beef and cabbage where revelers in the past ate Irish bacon. Other foods that have become traditional pay homage to the Great Hunger that left one million dead from 1845 to 1852. Those foods include cream cheese and Irish Potato Candy.

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The year is uncertain, but legend has it that St. Patrick died on March 17 in Ireland. After his passing, the Saint’s jawbone was preserved inside a silver shrine. That relic was used to ward off evil spirits.

St. Patrick, known as the patron Saint of Ireland as he freed the Emerald Isle from dangerous snakes, is also known for the tradition of women getting on bended knee to propose marriage during leap year.

This St. Patrick’s Day stay safe and remember why we celebrate. Happy St. Patrick’s Day from Travels with Harley!