The life and legends of Saint Patrick, patron saint of Ireland or the Apostle of Ireland, are well known and celebrated both inside and outside of Ireland. However, while emerald islanders may view Saint Patrick's day with solemnity as a holy day of obligation. Other countries celebrate the holiday a bit differently, quite the understatement...parades, confetti, green beer, feasting, painted faces and the wearing of the green, makes this holiday probably one of the the most widely celebrated by Irish diaspora, Irish emigrants and their descendants in countries all over the world.
Legend has it that old Saint P. drove out all the snakes in Ireland...funny, there never were snakes in Ireland in the first place - ever. The emerald isle of Ireland has only one native reptile species, the viviparous or common lizard. Isn't that a bit of a let-down, but the Irish do enjoy spinning tall tales.
Shamrocks are a central symbol for St Patrick's Day because St. Patrick used the three-leafed clover to demonstrate the relationship of the Christian belief of three persons in one God. An easy transition since the shamrock had already been long considered a sacred symbol of rebirth and eternal life by pre-Christian pagans of Ireland's history. Over time, this symbol of belief, combined with the sacred number "three" that pagans believed represented the "Triple Goddesses" Brigid, 'riu, and the Morrigan, gradually changed into the current trinity lessons of today: father, son and holy ghost.