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Bell Ringer #2: Thurs. 3/17/11 Why do we celebrate St. Patrick’s Day? What do you think of when you think of St. Patrick’s Day?

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Presentation on theme: "Bell Ringer #2: Thurs. 3/17/11 Why do we celebrate St. Patrick’s Day? What do you think of when you think of St. Patrick’s Day?"— Presentation transcript:

1 Bell Ringer #2: Thurs. 3/17/11 Why do we celebrate St. Patrick’s Day? What do you think of when you think of St. Patrick’s Day?

2 The History of St. Patrick's Day

3 Who was St. Patrick? St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, is one of Christianity's most widely known figures. But for all his celebrity, his life remains somewhat of a mystery. It is known that St. Patrick was born in Britain to wealthy parents near the end of the fourth century. He is believed to have died on March 17, around 460 A.D. At the age of sixteen, Patrick was taken prisoner by a group of Irish raiders who were attacking his family's estate. They transported him to Ireland where he spent six years in captivity.

4 Who was St. Patrick? After more than six years as a prisoner, Patrick escaped. According to his writing, a voice-which he believed to be God's-spoke to him in a dream, telling him it was time to leave Ireland. Soon after, Patrick began religious training, a course of study that lasted more than fifteen years. After his ordination as a priest, he was sent to Ireland with a dual mission-to minister to Christians already living in Ireland and to begin to convert the Irish.

5 Who was St. Patrick? Familiar with the Irish language and culture, Patrick chose to incorporate traditional ritual into his lessons of Christianity instead of attempting to eradicate native Irish beliefs. For instance, he used bonfires to celebrate Easter since the Irish were used to honoring their gods with fire. He also superimposed a sun, a powerful Irish symbol, onto the Christian cross to create what is now called a Celtic cross, so that veneration of the symbol would seem more natural to the Irish.

6 History of the Holiday St. Patrick's Day is celebrated on March 17, his religious feast day and the anniversary of his death in the fifth century. The Irish have observed this day as a religious holiday for thousands of years. On St. Patrick's Day, which falls during the Christian season of Lent, Irish families would traditionally attend church in the morning and celebrate in the afternoon. Lenten prohibitions against the consumption of meat were waived and people would dance, drink, and feast—on the traditional meal of Irish bacon and cabbage.

7 History of the Holiday The first St. Patrick's Day parade took place not in Ireland, but in the United States. Irish soldiers serving in the English military marched through New York City on March 17, 1762. Along with their music, the parade helped the soldiers to reconnect with their Irish roots, as well as fellow Irishmen serving in the English army.

8 History of the Holiday Today, St. Patrick's Day is celebrated by people of all backgrounds in the United States, Canada, and Australia. Although North America is home to the largest productions, St. Patrick's Day has been celebrated in other locations far from Ireland, including Japan, Singapore, and Russia. Last year, close to one million people took part in Ireland 's St. Patrick's Festival in Dublin, a multi-day celebration featuring parades, concerts, outdoor theater productions, and fireworks shows.

9 No Irish Need Apply Up until the mid-19th century, most Irish immigrants in America were members of the Protestant middle class. When the Great Potato Famine hit Ireland in 1845, close to a million poor and uneducated Irish Catholics began pouring into America to escape starvation. Despised for their religious beliefs and funny accents by the American Protestant majority, the immigrants had trouble finding even menial jobs. When Irish Americans in the country's cities took to the streets on St. Patrick's Day to celebrate their heritage, newspapers portrayed them in cartoons as drunk, violent monkeys.

10 No Irish Need Apply However, the Irish soon began to realize that their great numbers endowed them with a political power that had yet to be exploited. They started to organize, and their voting block, known as the "green machine," became an important swing vote for political hopefuls. Suddenly, annual St. Patrick's Day parades became a show of strength for Irish Americans, as well as a must-attend event for a slew of political candidates. In 1948, President Truman attended New York City 's St. Patrick's Day parade, a proud moment for the many Irish whose ancestors had to fight stereotypes and racial prejudice to find acceptance in America.

11 When is the celebration?
Corned beef and cabbage is a traditional St. Patrick's Day dish. In 2007, roughly 41.5 billion pounds of U.S. beef and 2.6 billion pounds of U.S. cabbage were sold. Many St. Patrick's Day celebrants enjoyed corned beef from Texas, which produced 6.8 billion pounds of beef, and cabbage from California and New York, which produced 581 and 580 million pounds, respectively. Irish soda bread gets its name and distinctive character from the use of baking soda rather than yeast as a leavening agent. Lime green chrysanthemums are often requested for St. Patrick's Day parades and celebrations.

12 The Leprechaun The original Irish name for these figures of folklore is "lobaircin," meaning "small-bodied fellow.“ Belief in leprechauns probably stems from Celtic belief in fairies, tiny men and women who could use their magical powers to serve good or evil. In Celtic folktales, leprechauns were cranky souls, responsible for mending the shoes of the other fairies. Though only minor figures in Celtic folklore, leprechauns were known for their trickery, which they often used to protect their much-fabled treasure.

13 The Leprechaun Leprechauns had nothing to do with St. Patrick or the celebration of St. Patrick's Day, a Catholic holy day. In 1959, Walt Disney released a film called Darby O'Gill & the Little People, which introduced America to a very different sort of leprechaun than the cantankerous little man of Irish folklore. This cheerful, friendly leprechaun is a purely American invention, but has quickly evolved into an easily recognizable symbol of both St. Patrick's Day and Ireland in general.

14 The Shamrock In fact the first written mention of this story did not appear until nearly a thousand years after Patrick's death. The shamrock, which was also called the "seamroy" by the Celts, was a sacred plant in ancient Ireland because it symbolized the rebirth of spring. By the seventeenth century, the shamrock had become a symbol of emerging Irish nationalism. As the English began to seize Irish land and make laws against the use of the Irish language and the practice of Catholicism, many Irish began to wear the shamrock as a symbol of their pride in their heritage and their displeasure with English rule.

15 The Snake It has long been recounted that, during his mission in Ireland, St. Patrick once stood on a hilltop (which is now called Croagh Patrick), and with only a wooden staff by his side, banished all the snakes from Ireland. In fact, the island nation was never home to any snakes. The "banishing of the snakes" was really a metaphor for the eradication of pagan ideology from Ireland and the triumph of Christianity. Within 200 years of Patrick's arrival, Ireland was completely Christianized.

16 Corned Beef Each year, thousands of Irish Americans gather with their loved ones on St. Patrick's Day to share a "traditional" meal of corned beef and cabbage. Though cabbage has long been an Irish food, corned beef only began to be associated with St. Patrick's Day at the turn of the century. Irish immigrants living on New York City's Lower East Side substituted corned beef for their traditional dish of Irish bacon to save money.

17 Idioms give someone the green light- give permission to go ahead with a project to have a green thumb - a have a talent for making things grow green with envy -very jealous, full of envy wearing of the green - to wear green clothing on St. Patrick’s Day to be green around the gills -to look very sick green-eyed monster - - to feel jealous to be green - to be inexperienced at something grass is always greener on the other side - a place that is different seems better than where we are now folding green- paper money


19 Writing Activity

20 Limericks! A limerick is a silly poem with five lines.
They are often funny or nonsensical.  For the sake of our class, we will keep all of our Limericks G-Rated PLEASE! 

21 Limericks! The first, second and fifth lines rhyme with each other and have the same number of syllables (typically 8 or 9).  The third and fourth lines rhyme with each other and have the same number of syllables (typically 5 or 6).   So the Rhyme Scheme would be… AABBA A (meter 8-9 syllables) B (meter 5-6 syllables)

22 Limericks! Limericks often start with the line "There once was a..." or "There was a..." Example of an 8,8,5,5,8 syllable limerick: There once was a clover named Kate, Who sat on the edge of a plate, The fancy folk dined, On foods of all kind, Then tossed her at quarter past eight.

23 Limericks! Johnny was a funny little man Who wanted to be a leprechaun, So he dressed all in green And played tricks to be mean, Then one day he got hit by a van.

24 Writing Activity An ancient scroll has been discovered… with what appears to be a map of buried treasure. What does it say? Where does the map lead? Write from the point of view of a leprechaun who believes his treasure is no longer safe. What is his treasure (you can be creative here)? Where does he hide it? What type of person do you have to be to obtain it – or can anyone get it? How long have you had your treasure?

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