Irish Culture By Kristen Robson Irish Symbols The Irish Flag ◦ In 1848, the tricolor design of the Irish flag was introduced by Thomas Francis Meagher. Green – represents the Irish people White – represents peace Orange – represents the people who supported William of Orange “father of the country” Irish Symbols The Shamrock ◦ The word originates from seamrog which means “summer plant” ◦ Legends say that the shamrock has magical powers The leaves will stand straight up when a storm is approaching There will be no snakes among them Saint Patrick Patron Saint of Ireland The Shamrock ◦ Used a shamrock, which was sacred to the Druids, to explain the Holy Trinity Snakes ◦ Legends say that St. Patrick banished snakes from Ireland A more logical reasoning for this phenomenon is that Ireland does not have snakes because it is an island and there are no ways for snakes to get there CULTURE the behaviors and beliefs characteristic of a particular social, ethnic, or age group: the youth culture; the drug culture The Language Irish (Gaeilge) is an IndoEuropean language . ◦ Part of a collection of languages known as Goidelic Celtic or QCeltic. In the 17th and 18th centuries the language started to decline due to famine and emigration. The Gaelic League (Conradh na Gaeilge) founded by Douglas Hyde and Eoin Mac Neill in1893 was created to help reinstate the Irish language. By 1905 they had over 500 branches in Ireland. Clothing 12th Century ◦ Colors of clothes were regulated by Brehon law 1 color for slaves and servants 2 colors for soldiers and farmers 3 colors for goodly heroes and young lords 4 colors for freeman 5 colors for cheiftain 6 colors for judges and bards 7 colors for kings and queens Today the Irish wear the same types of clothes as Americans. The Irish Arts Traditional and Folk Music In the 17th Century the Irish Aristocracy appreciated harp musicians but this died out only a century later. Between 1820 and 1920 Irish singers immigrated to U.S.A.. The ones that became successful made recordings which worked their way back to Ireland for them to hear. Traditional singing, Sean-nos, is still found to be used in poetic styles of songs. Dance http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B718RsboGEI Click here!!!!! Early Irish dancing was Celtic dancing by the Druids. ◦ Trees, animals, work, war, courtship, and some for fun 18th Century ◦ Solo footwork was incorporated into group dances. ◦ Dance Masters taught for a fee and were usually accompanied by a piper of fiddler. ◦ Dance Masters continued until the 20th Century. Holiday Traditions Christmas in Ireland The laden table ◦ After Christmas Eve Dinner, the table is set again and the front door left ajar so that Mary and Joseph, or any other wondering person can come in and enjoy the welcome. Christmas in Ireland Decorations ◦ Holly rings originated in Ireland. Because they were ample and cheap, the poor were able to easily decorate their homes for the occasion. ◦ It is considered bad luck to take down any decorations before ‘Little Christmas,” January 6th. Beginnings of Halloween ◦ During the Celtic New Year, celebrated on November 1st, it was believed that a veil opened between this world and the spirit world. People would paint their face and attempt to look unappealing so that spirits would not approach them. This is where the idea of costumes and masks came from. Beginnings of Halloween ◦ Jack O’lantern When Jack died he was refused entrance into Heaven because he was too stingy during his life. Jack was also turned down at the gates of Hell because the Devil had had enough of Jack’s jokes. The Devil gave him a hot piece of coal to light his way until Judgment Day. He placed the coal in a turnip to guide his light. The U.S.A. used pumpkins because they were more common than turnips. Superstitions An iron ring worn on the fourth finger will prevent rheumatism. Drinking boiled carrot juice purifies the blood. A sick person’s bed must be placed North to South, and no other way. It is unlucky if a chair falls when a person stands up. If you want to know the name of the person you will marry, put a snail on a plate covered in flour for the night, when you wake up, there will be the initials. To have a rabbit cross your path before sunrise is unlucky. WORKS CITED "About Saint Patrick's Day." DLTK's Sites, Web. 5 Dec 2009. <http://www.dltk- holidays.com/patrick/about.htm>. "Culture." Dictionary.com.Web. 5 Dec 2009. <http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/culture>. Houlihan, Eileen. "A Holiday that Ireland ." Ireland Fun Facts. Dec 2009. <http://www.yourirish.com/irish- Web. 11 language.htm>. "Irish Christmas Traditions." Ireland-Information. Web. 5 Dec 2009. <http://www.irelandinformation.com/articles/irishchristmastraditions.htm>. The Irish Path. Web. 13 Dec 2009. <http://www.the-irish-path.com/index.html>. "Symbols of Ireland." of-ireland. Web. 5 Dec 2009. <http://www.ofireland.info/symbol.html>. William of Orange 1533-1584From rebel nobleman to “father of the country”." Entoen. Web. 5 Dec 2009. <http://entoen.nu/willemvanoranje/en>. "The Irish Language." YourIrish.com. Web. 11 Dec 2009. <http://www.yourirish.com/irish-language.htm>.