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Customs throughout the year in Ireland
23. October 2019.
The people of Ireland do not shy away from preparing good celebrations, which makes this interesting country a top destination for entertainment. Celebrations are an important part of Irish culture, and religious events, historical figures, and national heritage are just some of the things that can be mentioned with great enthusiasm in Ireland.
‘Pub culture’ in Ireland is an integral part of life, pubs are seen as places where friends and family can meet, chat and socialize. All pubs in Ireland have Guinness, which is one of the most popular drinks in the world and brings them 2 million euros in revenue each year. This famous dark stout beer was created in 1759. in Dublin by Arthur Guinness in his St. James’s Gate Brewery.
Irish history has a strong connection with Catholicism, and one of the most famous links to this is the Brigid’s Cross, which was constructed from wild reeds. St. Brigid of Kildare is said to have made a cross near one chieftain deathbed and thus converted him to Christianity; others believe that the cross was created before Christianity came to Ireland at all and was a symbol for another Brigit, the goddess of spring whose cross represented the sun. The Feast of St. Brigid, the Irish celebrate on February 1st, the first day of spring in ancient Ireland. The cross was believed to protect the house from fire, which is still believed today.
One of the most anticipated days in Ireland is St. Patrick, or as the Irish like to call it Paddy’s Day. It is celebrated on March 17th and everyone goes out on the streets to dance, drink and celebrate. It is customary to dress in green and have something on with clover design. These are mostly hats, T-shirts, glasses. The biggest celebration takes place in Dublin and lasts for four days. A colorful program is offered, from street entertainers to children’s workshops. St. Patrick’s Day begins with going to church in the morning and continues with an afternoon celebration with family. Why is this day commemorated? Patrick is said to have introduced Irish to Christianity after he was abducted by Irish pirates and sold into slavery. Slavery brought him closer to God and returned to Ireland at the age of 30. He used the clover, which is the national flower of Ireland, to bring the pagan Irish closer to the Holy Trinity.
The Irish Bloomsday celebration honors James Joyce, one of Ireland’s most famous literary masters. This event is held each year on June 16, the day in which Joyce’s classic novel “Ulysses” takes place. First celebrated in Ireland in 1954, Bloomsday is now a worldwide event celebrated by Joyceans across the globe. Dublin’s James Joyce Centre hosts several events in the days leading up to Bloomsday, including reenactments, performances, readings, and breakfasts based on cuisine featured in the novel. Some Bloomsday enthusiasts even wear costumes.
Christmas in Ireland is a big celebration and runs from December 24 to January 6, although many consider December 8 to be the official start of the season. During the festive season, you will find choirs and street musicians on the street. Ireland’s large Catholic population is packed with churches across the country for midnight mass on Christmas Eve, as well as for Christmas Mass. December 26th marks St. Stephen’s Day, a national holiday in honor of the Christian Martyr, commemorating traditional ceremonies, feasts, and trips to pubs across Ireland.
New Year in Ireland is based on traditional festivities. In many Irish Protestant communities, New Year’s Day marks the end of the Christmas season and is often referred to as in the 19th century – Little Christmas. The Irish have many traditions of how to start and not start the new year, some of which are, for example, that dust and dirt should not be wiped out in the home because it was believed that by completing these tasks, the happiness of the home could be eliminated over the next 12 months. They also believe that the first person to enter the house after midnight represents the happiness of the household for the next 12 months. A dark-skinned man is thought to bring good luck with himself, while a woman, especially a redhead, brings bad luck in the household. If a dark-skinned man was present in the household before midnight, he would often be asked to leave a few minutes before midnight and then be invited inside after midnight. Outdoor activities, ie sports, and games, are also traditional for the New Year, which is common with Christmas.
If these customs and general life in Ireland sound appealing to you, feel free to reach one of our contacts and we will present you with interesting offers in beautiful Ireland.
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