The award-winning voice of North Cobb High School in Kennesaw, Georgia.

The Chant

The award-winning voice of North Cobb High School in Kennesaw, Georgia.

The Chant

The award-winning voice of North Cobb High School in Kennesaw, Georgia.

The Chant

The day of green: history of St. Patrick’s Day

Jameson Johnson
Approaching March, the color green and other items that represent St. Patrick’s Day come into play throughout classrooms, along with curated menu items or drinks. Although people may have not educated themselves on the history of St. Patrick, the annual holiday remains widely known. Parades and parties scatter the streets the night of March 17 to celebrate St. Patrick and what he accomplished throughout his lifetime.

People worldwide dig through their closets to find clothes with a hint of green on March 17 to avoid the greatest pinch of the century. Saint Patrick’s Day celebrations differ all over the world; bars offer great deals and restaurants create special meals to partake in on the day of green. St. Patrick’s Day made its debut in 1631, which marks the day St.Patrick himself passed away. 

This day of remembrance lacks importance without clear knowledge of what St. Patrick and his accomplishments represent. St. Patrick, a patron saint of Ireland, became enslaved by the British government at the ripe age of 16. He later broke through the struggles and managed to escape to his home in Ireland, bringing them the foreign religion of Christianity. Throughout the years, the story of his life became twisted, while the legend of St. Patrick stays present through the annual celebration

Although the holiday appears to revolve around the Irish, St. Augustine, Florida. hosted the first St. Patrick’s Day parade. At the time, a Spanish colony resided in St. Augustine and the colony’s Irish vicar, Ricardo Luther, planned the parade along with St. Patrick’s celebration a year prior. 

The day of luck falls under the Christian season of Lent. The day begins by Christians heading to church to remind people what they personally restricted for Lent. Later in the afternoon, people hold a feast for all to celebrate and remember the death of St. Patrick. The traditional feast holds bacon and cabbage, while a waiver for those who swore off meat exists, allowing everyone to enjoy the dinner to the fullest extent. 

“Me and my family celebrate [St. Patrick’s Day] by just dressing up in green and we usually have a somewhat St. Patrick’s themed dinner. When I was little, my mom used to make a trap for the leprechauns and my brother and I would always go look for him [the leprechaun] in the morning. We also do St. Patrick’s Day-themed family games if it falls on the weekend or something,” sophomore Lindsay Angel said.

Surrounding the month of March, shamrocks appear in about every corner including decorations, menus, drinks and others. The cute decoration supports the religious side of the holiday by representing the Holy Trinity. Each leaf on the shamrock supports something surrounding the Trinity including the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Four-leaf clovers, another popular St. Patrick’s Day decoration stand for something similar where each leaf represents faith, hope, love and luck. 

Rainbows and pots of gold follow the folktale of little men dressed in green running around causing mischief and pinching. Those who mistakenly forgot to wear green on St. Patrick’s Day received pinched by the leprechauns as punishment.  The well-known leprechaun men came from Irish fables and made their way into the beloved holiday. When one wears green, people supposedly can remain unseen from the leprechaun’s line of sight, explaining why the little men pinch those who do not wear green. The tiny characters represent a beloved symbol of Ireland and its rich cultural heritage. 

“I’ve gone to one of the St. Patrick’s Day parades in Atlanta. It was super cool and they had a ton of green floats to match the day. One of the floats even had people dressed as leprechauns and rainbows all over the place. I think St. Patrick’s Day is super fun. I like dressing up and pinching people who don’t wear green,” sophomore Lisa Scranton said. 

As St. Patrick’s Day quickly approaches, traditions such as making traps to catch leprechauns in classrooms and creating crafts with pots of gold appear. Restaurants develop and release their special menus to celebrate the Irish and cities such as New York and Boston have begun planning parades for March 17. The Chant offers a friendly reminder to wear green on St. Patrick’s Day or the risk of getting pinched may impact the day. 


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