Double Celebration Day

Flag of St GeorgeToday is St George’s Day. St. George is the patron saint of England – we share him with many other regions, towns and countries around the world as well, including Catalonia (Spain) Georgia, Greece, Lithuania and Russia to name but a few!

Despite being our saint’s day today is not a Bank Holiday, oh no, that would be too patriotic and here in England we are not allowed to be patriotic in case it upsets those amongst us who are not ethnically English; it’s not ‘PC’ to be patriotic about England.

St. Patrick’s Day (for Ireland) is a Bank Holiday, so is St. Andrew’s Day (for Scotland) and we are allowed to celebrate special days with those whose ethnic roots are not here in the UK, such as Diwali or West Indian Carnival amongst others and we have St. Patrick’s Day parades in English cities, but nothing for St George.

Actually that is not strictly true, we do have St. Georges Day Parades. Many towns up and down the country have Church Parades for the uniformed organisations such as Guides, Scouts and armed forces Cadets, led by a band and members of the British Legion. This is usually a simple march up a short length of road, carrying their banners, into Church for a service on the nearest Sunday to the day (this year that was yesterday) and does not inspire a great deal of celebration amongst the population at large, no major public show of unity, purpose and celebration – I repeat, that would be too patriotic. I can’t help feeling that there are large numbers of our population who not aware that today is St. George’s Day, or possibly even that he is our patron saint.

The second cause for celebration today is that it is also the birthday of the bard – William Shakespeare. Unfortunately I also fear that there are many who are equally unaware of this and probably don’t care anyway – despite the fact that they quite unknowingly quote (or misquote) from his works in their ordinary everyday speech. If I start listing all the words, phrases and expressions he introduced into our language I will be here all day and beyond!

So in honour of our Double Celebration Day today I wish you all a Happy St. George’s Day and leave you with a quote from the bard:

“The game’s afoot:
Follow your spirit; and, upon this charge
Cry ‘God for Harry! England and Saint George.'”

Henry V Act III Scene I

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Celebration

English FlagDouble
celebration —
St. George
and the Bard.

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