St. George’s Day 2018

Published: 22/05/2019

With Wales celebrating St. David’s Day on 1st March and Northern Ireland celebrating St. Patrick’s Day on 17th March, it is now time for England to celebrate St. George’s day on the 23rd April.  

With Wales celebrating St. David’s Day on 1st March and Northern Ireland celebrating St. Patrick’s Day on 17th March, it is now time for England to celebrate St. George’s day on the 23rd April.

But who exactly was St George – and did he really slay a dragon?

Here we take a look at 5 facts about St George...

1. St George wasn’t English

Despite being hailed as a national hero, St George was thought to have been born in Cappodocia (modern day Turkey) and to have died in Lydda (modern day Israel).
 
2. St George wasn’t a knight

St George wore shining armor, but it was that of a soldier, not that of a knight as we think of him today. Despite being depicted as a knight on horseback, the truth is far less fancier – he was likely an officer in the Roman army.

3. England isn’t the only country to celebrate St George.

St George is an international saint that England shares with Venice, Genoa, Portugal and Catalonia among others and many have their own celebrations and ceremonies in his honour.

4. The dragon was added laterThe famous legend of George and the dragon was popularized in the late 13th century in a compilation about the lives of saints. From the 15th century the tale was published in England.

5. St George never visited England.It is thought to be highly unlikely that St George never came to England, although his reputation spread across Europe from the 7th Century. Richard I placed himself and his army under the protection of St George and also adopted the emblem of St George – a red cross on a white background, which was later used on the English Flag.

St George’s day is celebrated throughout England with parades, dancing, festivals, pub lunches and more. As always, Wrest Park will be holding their annual St George’s Festival, known to be one of the biggest celebrations in the country.

There’s plenty to do for all ages, including knight school, arts and crafts, circus skills, all whilst living in a medieval setting. Find out more here > http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/whats-on/wrest-st-george-day-21-04-2018/