(Photos from http://www.worldatlas.com)Ireland is west of the United Kingdom (England,Scotland, Wales). Northern Ireland is part ofthe United Kingdom. Ireland is across theAtlantic Ocean from the U.S.
It rains a lot in Ireland, making everything very green. It is often called “The Emerald Isle.”Photo by David Holmes: http://www.charm.net
The flag of Ireland is green, white and orange. The green represents Catholics,the orange is for Protestants, and the whitesymbolizes the hope for peace between the two groups.
The National Holiday is March 17, St.Patrick’s Day, named after the PatronSaint of Ireland. (Photo from:http://www.irishhungermartyrs.org/)
Most people in Ireland speakEnglish, but a few still speakGaelic. You might hearsomeone say “Erin go bragh”on St. Patrick’s Day, which isGaelic for “Ireland forever.” (Sound file from: http://www.irish-sayings.com/)
(Photo from: http://www.publicmuseum.oshkosh.net/Exhibits/Communities/communities.html) (Photos from: http://www.eurocoins.co.uk/ireland.html) The harp is a symbol of Ireland. It can be seen on the presidential flag and on the back of the Irish Euro coin. A Euro is worth about $1.32.
The shamrock is anothersymbol of Ireland. It isalways worn on St. Patrick’sDay.
(Photo from: http://www.geographia.com/northern-ireland/ukiant01.htm)The Giant’s Causeway is a mass ofstone columns that extend from a cliffin Northern Ireland and disappearunder the sea towards Scotland. Theywere formed by a volcanic eruption 60million years ago. However, theancients believed it to be the work of agiant named Fin M’Coul.
The Celts, warriors fromwestern Europe, controlledIreland for 1000 years. Todaythe term “celtic” is often used torefer to anything traditionallyIrish, such as celtic music andceltic dance. Dance, music,holidays, and traditions are allpart of a people’s culture.
Celtic music usestraditional instrumentssuch as the fiddle, tinwhistle, and bodhran(Irish drum). (Animated photo from: http://www.drumdojo.com/world/ireland/bodhranintro.htm)
Why do we celebrateSt. Patrick’s Day ?•It’s fun to celebrateholidays from around theworld. Even if you’re notIrish, you can enjoycelebrating the holiday bywearing green, which isalso a sign of spring.