...family, friends, home and other tidbits of a blessed life

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

St Patrick's Day- blarney and all tablescape

I do so love St. Patrick's Day. 
I'm sure somewhere I have an Irish gene..
a wee bit unlikely, but even blarney is Irish! :-)

How much of what we know is myth? How much truth?
 I think I found some answers:

"St. Patrick used this simple green herb to explain the concept of The Holy Trinity – The Father, The Son and The Holy Spirit – and how they could all exist as separate elements of the same entity. His followers adopted the custom of wearing a shamrock on his feast day."

The Wearing of the Green:
"With 10 times the population of Ireland in the US claiming Irish ancestry, one in four Britons doing the same, and countless more in other countries around the world, it seems that people wishing to become ‘Irish for the day’ have opted for the green of the Irish flag to express their Irishness. In fact, in the US, it’s not uncommon to spot folks sporting hand-drawn shamrocks on their cheeks with streaks of green running through their hair.

"One of the reasons that one wears green on St. Patrick's Day is because the Catholic side of Ireland is identified with green, and St. Patrick is a Catholic Saint credited with converting the island to Christianity. Whereas the Protestants are identified with orange, and are often called "Orangemen," as in King William the Orange. The clashes in Ireland between the Catholics and Protestants are often clashes of the green and the orange. The irony is that the Irish flag, is supposed to represent the unity of the two with the white between the two colors representing unity. The traditional pinching of a person who wears orange on St. Patrick's Day is a mild form of the violence that has so often occurred in the past as both factions have had St. Patrick's Day marches/parades. In Ireland, you only wear green if you are Catholic. Protestants all wear orange. The US does not observe this tradition. The day is celebrated with parades, green beer and lots of shamrock decorations. On St. Paddy's day, everyone is Irish."

"History: Just before the 1798 Rebellion in Ireland if you wore a shamrock in your hat, it signified your support for the Rebellion. Hence the saying "the wearing of the green." Green was also the colour of "Society of United Irishmen," a republican revoluntionary organisation. This organisation launched the 1798 Rebellion and may I add that the forefathers/founders of this Organisation, despite public misconception were a mixture of Presbyterians, Church of Ireland and Catholics."

 "Another answer: The wearing of Green stems from the ancient Celtic practice of wearing green during the Vernal Equinox to celebrate the rebirth of the Earth. When Christianity invaded Ireland, many of the Irish traditions were adopted into practice, to make conversion easier. Saint Patrick included using bonfires and adopted the symbol of the sun onto the cross, creating what is now known as the Celtic Cross. Since the local Pagan population was hesitant to give up wearing green, that too was adopted. It should be noted that St. Patrick's original color was blue."

Myth or Truth?
"The Irish didn’t always look so kindly on donning the color green. Irish folklore considered the color unlucky as it was the favorite shade of the Good People – leprechauns. Those who wore too much of the color – especially children – could be stolen away. Some cynics may tell you there are no such things as leprechauns, but there are those who beg to differ. True believers will swear that if you take a stroll along a quiet country lane in Ireland, you can actually hear the mischievous leprechauns giggling by the side of the road."

Snakes in Ireland?
"First, let’s tackle the snakes. Apart from our modern-day zoos, it’s true that there are no snakes slithering around the green isle. But this has little to do with St. Patrick and probably more to do with the fact that there have never been any indigenous snakes in Ireland. Driving the snakes from Ireland was most likely symbolic of putting an end to pagan practices, which disappeared from Ireland in the centuries after St. Patrick introduced the seeds of Christianity."

Ireland or America?
"Until the 1970s, St. Patrick's Day in Ireland was a minor religious holiday. A priest would acknowledge the feast day, and families would celebrate with a big meal, but that was about it.
"St. Patrick's Day was basically invented in America by Irish-Americans," Freeman said.
Irish-American history expert Timothy Meagher said Irish charitable organizations originally celebrated St. Patrick's Day with banquets in places such as Boston, Massachusetts; Savannah, Georgia; and Charleston, South Carolina.
Eighteenth-century Irish soldiers fighting with the British in the U.S. Revolutionary War held the first St. Patrick's Day parades. Some soldiers, for example, marched through New York City in 1762 to reconnect with their Irish roots.
Other parades followed in the years and decades after, including well-known celebrations in Boston, Philadelphia, and Chicago, primarily in flourishing Irish immigrant communities.
"It becomes a way to honor the saint but also to confirm ethnic identity and to create bonds of solidarity," said Meagher, of Catholic University in Washington, D.C.."

 The River Green
"Sometime in the 19th century, as St. Patrick's Day parades were flourishing, wearing the color green became a show of commitment to Ireland, Meagher said.
In 1962 the show of solidarity took a spectacular turn in Chicago when the city decided to dye a portion of the Chicago River green.
The tradition started when parade organizer Steve Bailey, head of a plumbers' union, noticed how a dye used to trace possible sources of river pollution had stained a colleague's overalls a brilliant green, according to greenchicagoriver.com.
Why not use the dye to turn the whole river green on St. Patrick's Day, Bailey thought. So began the tradition.
The environmental impact of the dye is minimal compared with pollution such as bacteria from sewage-treatment plants, said Margaret Frisbie, the executive director of the advocacy group Friends of the Chicago River."

Shamrock or Clover
"..... the custom of wearing a shamrock dates back to the 17th and 18th centuries, and "I know of no evidence to say what people then used. I think the argument on authenticity is purely academic—basically I'd guess they used anything cloverlike then."

St. Patrick
S ent to Ireland by God,
T aken there by force.
P atrick tended his flock
A nd listened to the Lord.
T ime ended his bondage
R eturning as a free man.
I nspiring with stories and service,
C eltic Christians honored him,
K eeping his memory forever green.

 Thank you for playing along.. It's time for a Guinness...
"On any given day 5.5 million pints of Guinness, the famous Irish stout brand, are consumed around the world.
But on St. Patrick's Day, that number more than doubles to 13 million pints, said Beth Davies Ryan, global corporate-relations director of Guinness.
"Historically speaking, a lot of Irish immigrants came to the United States and brought with them lots of customs and traditions, one of them being Guinness," she said.
Today, the U.S. tradition of St. Patrick's Day parades, packed pubs, and green silliness has invaded Ireland with full force, said Freeman, the classics professor.
The country, he noted, figured out that the popularity of St. Patrick's Day was a good way to boost spring tourism."

Irish Linen Placemats
Bordallo Pinheiro Cabbage Charger Plates
Wedgwood Windsor Dinner Plates
French Arcorac? Maybe Salad Plates
Estate Sale Mixed Silver Flatware
Ralph Lauren Napkins
Stein Mart Napkin rings
Handblown in France Purchased in Santa Fe, NM Water Goblets
Dollar Tree Wine Glasses
Candle holders and Plant are both Unknowns

Thank so much for sticking this one out! Wishing each of you a safe and happy St. Patrick's Day. I'll be partying over at Cuisine Kathleen's Let's Dish and then on to Susan's Tablescape Thursday at Between Naps on the Porch. See ya there!


RhondaBuss said...

Marlis, I LOVE the shape of the cross in the center of the table and the white flowers. It's Easter and St.Patrick all together. So beautiful.

Tricia said...

Great post, Marlis -- filled with information! Your table is lovely and elegant -- my favorite kind. Last year we were in Chicago for St. Patrick's Day and got to see the river dyed green -- very fun!

ellen b. said...

What a great St.Patrick's day table/history course. Love it! I have those napkins in a tablecloth version. Love the design. Your table is fresh and would be lovely to sit at...

Alycia Nichols said...

I learned something valuable today! I had no idea that the orange color represented the Protestant side! That's so interesting that the flag has both colors with white representing unity when there has been anything BUT unity between the 2 factions over the centuries! Should I get caught without green on on St. Patrick's Day, though, I will educate the pincher and let them know they're only supposed to pinch me if I'm wearing orange! Then I'll pinch them back! :-) Your table is beautiful, Marlis, as the blogging/decorating world has come to expect and appreciate! I sure wish I could find those big green cabbage plates! I have the salad size only. :-( Are you going to down a Guinness to celebrate? I just can't do beer!!!! I have tried and tried, but I just can't go there! That's almost sacrilegious around these parts. I was just about the only one in my college group who didn't drink beer. I was a very expensive date with my vodka tonics! :-) Have a great St. Patrick's Day!!!!

On Crooked Creek said...

This tablescape is exquisitely designed for a festive Saint Patrick's Day clelbration...and that is NO blarney, dear friend!!!
I adore all of the green glassware in both your stemware and the French Arcorac salad plate!!!
Simply elegant!
Happy Saint Patrick;s Day!

xinex said...

How stunning! I like the pale shade of green you used. Beautiful napkins and love the glassware....Christine

Happier Than a Pig in Mud said...

Your table is very pretty Marlis! I love the great green napkin rings and pretty napkins:@)

Mary said...

Such an elegant table with all your subtle and soft greens! Your paisley napkins set the tone beautifully and I love your mix of flatware. I'm always amazed when I see those lovely Dollar Tree stems.

Pat said...

Absolutely wonderful St Patrick's Day table, Marlis. So much to love about this post!

The HOME GIRL said...

Just Beautiful, Marlis! A lovely table, thoughtfully "cast", and very festive for the occasion! I love the fun facts you shared too! Great post! =D

Debbie@Mountain Breaths said...

A wonderful table and fun facts too! Happy St. Patrick's Day, O'Marlis.

Ann Krucek said...

Wonderful post!! I am not a spec of Irish - but have red hair and was born on the 17th of March - so I celebrate as if I was - just like you said in your post!! Your table is beautiful. How in the heck did you get that shot from above - where you hanging from your chandelier??!!! Have a Happy St. Patrick's Day!

kitty said...

Thank you for all your history you shared today, Marlis! I enjoyed reading your lessons in between all your pretty photos of your table. Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Happy Cottage Quilter said...

Your table is so elegant Marlis. And I love the shadow play. Wishing you a Happy St. Patrick's Day :-)

Jocelyn @

Rettabug said...

What a wonderfully informative post, Marlis...thanks for sharing all that. I learned a great deal.

Your table is Gorgeous! I just love how the light dances across your table & all your pretty things.

Happy St. Patricks' Day!

Kathe said...

Not only did you share your beautiful table with us Marlis, you taught us so much about the traditions of the day and of Ireland! Love the napkins and the napkin rings. Love the place settings too. Elegant yes warm and cozy! Happy St. Patrick's Day dear friend :-)

A Toile Tale said...

You've outdone yourself today, Marlis. What a thoughtful post. It's Irish without being hit on the head with leprechans!
Linda @ A Toile Tale


Oh my dear Marlis, some gorgeous table you did for St. Pat's!! Beautiful cross you placed in the middle of the table and the lovely glass ware, napkin rings and the delicate pale green dishes..I love it all! Have a happy St. Patrick's Day!!

Tea in Texas said...

What a wonderful post and the creative way you expessed all the great information about Ireland! I am Irish on both sides and love St. Patrick's Day! The beautiful tablescape is so perfect to sit and enjoy an Irish celebration. The crystal is beautiful and the cabbage plates are lovely for and Irish feast. My favorite are your green napkin rings just wonderful with your napkins. Have a happy March 17th!


Linda (More Fun Less Laundry) said...

Hi Marlis, I enjoyed every bit of this post!! The table is beautiful, just as I always expect from you, and the information is so entertaining!! When we were kids I definitely remember lots of people wearing orange in my town. Either you were Catholic or you weren't, and those who weren't let it be known on that day! What can I say? It was a very small town. I've been in both Boston and Dublin on different St. Patrick days, and the celebrations were quite different! Much less "carousing" in Dublin--mostly only by Americans, sadly. Thank you for the wonderful post! Linda

Marigene said...

Simply beautiful, Marlis...love the napkins/napkin rings. I am not positive, but I think all Arcoroc plates are stamped with their name, at least all the ones I have owned were...hold them up to a window/light and you will see it in tiny print.

Yellow Rose Arbor said...

This is very pretty. Thanks for all the info, very interesting. I didn't know about wearing the green and orange!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!


Sarah said...

Marlis, this is a fantastic post. I read every word and learned a lot, all the while taking in the beauty of your gorgeous tablescape. You outdid yourself with this post. Bravo! I enjoyed every green detail, though I'm sitting here smiling at two absolutely gorgeous blue and white flower bricks. '-) They were safely delivered to my doorstep last evening. Thank you again for this thoughtful giveaway. I'm honored to be the one to receive them. Happy St. Patrick's Day! ~ Sarah

Barbara F. said...

What a beautiful table, as always, and I enjoyed the info! xo

Diane said...

Marlis - your table is beautiful. Love the candlesticks and how you used green around them. Those napkins are pretty wonderful, too, and who would not want those Irish linen placemats? I, especially, enjoyed the history lesson - I thought that I knew a good bit about Ireland, but you have certainly proved me wrong! I learned so much this morning - thanks!!

Ricki Jill Treleaven said...

I enjoyed reading your post. It's interesting because most of my ancestors were Scotch-Ulsters, so they would have worn orange! ;P

I love St. Patrick's Day, and your table is so pretty. You're all set to celebrate!


Debbie@Debbie-Dabble and A Debbie-Dabble Christmas said...

Beautiful tablescape!!!

Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving such a sweet comment!!


SavoringTime in the Kitchen said...

I learned some very interesting facts from your post! Thank you for very informative and beautiful post. Beautiful table and I love your green stemware!

Jewel Sauls said...

Beautiful table and informative post! I even learned some new things!!!

Tammy @ A Walk in the Countryside said...

Marlis, Your table is beautiful! I love how you wrapped the mercury candle holders!

Holly said...

Thanks for all of the history - very cool to read and beautiful tablescape as well. Irish for a day! Holly

Moni - Zuhaus at Home said...

Oh, Marlis, are you a teacher? Thank you for all of the history and St. Patricks explanation of the shamrock. I heard it before, but loved it second time around!
Your table is so beautiful....my favorite...the snowdrops in the center...thanks for sharing this beautiful post!

Chubby Chieque said...

Wonderful table, Marlis!

I adore the small details, cross, shamrocks and most of all the facts. Very educational. Not many share facts on bloggie world, so for me? I learn new thing.

TY for sharing and as a Catholic, I do appreciate the facts.

Happy w/end ahead and GB to you and your lovelies.

Hugs from D´Box,
/CC girl

Gina said...

Your table looks very pretty! Thanks for sharing all the facts & trivia with us. I had always heard never to wear orange on St. Patrick's Day, but I never knew why. Very interesting!

Liz@ Infuse With Liz said...

I enjoyed reading your story about St. Patricks day. I've always wondered about these traditions. I have a wee bit of Irish in me, but my family never made much of it. What a nice table to sit down to on this Sunday's St. Patrick's day!

Bonnie said...

I loved all the information on St. Patrick's Day. I did not know much at all. I plan to reread and try to remember. That was a lot of work. Thank you.

Great tablescape. I do love your chargers and linen placemats.

Maria said...

Oh, Marlis! This table is no blarney! I love it! I also bought those napkins at HomeGoods but I am saving them for Easter. I so enjoy all the little stories we learn through your postings! It adds to the fun! Your Wedgwood dinner plates are fabulous. I've seen you use them on other tablescapes and they always look great! I've started collecting some of the Bordallo Pinheiro plates, but don't have enough yet for a full tablescape, so I'm enjoying yours vicariously! Great table!

Ms Lemon of Make Mine Lemon said...

What a fun post and your table is gorgeous.

GardenofDaisies said...

Your St Patrick's Day table is so pretty! Festive and yet serene at the same time. I am part Irish, and you are welcome to be Irish along with us anytime. There sure is lots of interesting lore out there, isn't there. Snakes, green people who take babies away... :-)

Cathy said...

What a great post, Marlis. I enjoyed reading all the info about Ireland. I have often wondered about some of the traditions that we uphold today. Your dining table is lovely.

Kathleen said...

I love those napkins! The table is beautiful, so crisp and Spring like! Great job!
Thanks so much for crawling in the St. Patrick's Blog Crawl!

As for the history, some of my relatives would give you a different version, lol. They were great story tellers. You'd laugh till your side ached!
Thanks for wearin' the green!

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Your St. patrick's Day tablescape is so elegant! have a wonderful celebration this weekend!

Laurie Ritchey said...

Marlis, Those beautiful white placemats combined with the greens give this table such an elegant look. Thanks for the St. Patrick's info. I learned some things. laurie


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