The Genocide of St. Patrick
To begin this story let me start with a little Public Service Announcement (PSA). This year, 2014, I learned that the Irish do not care much for we Americans and Canadians calling their national holiday St. Patty’s Day. But probably isn’t what you think. Which is what I thought; it’s Patrick, not Patty. Nope that’s not it. Well not entirely.
I discovered a PSA had been posted in the Dublin Airport correcting a misconception for those of us in the Americas. It’s not Patty, it’s Paddy. Seems Patty is short for Patricia and of course, Patrick was a male priest. The proper shortening of the male variation is Paddy. And St. Paddy’s Day is perfectly acceptable. So now we know.
Now on to our tale of Pagans and Paddy. First, we must start with some of the early inhabitants of Ireland. What little is known of these people come from Irish songs and poetry, oral legends and Roman writings. The Celtic lands of Ireland, Scotland and Wales were populated primarily by individual or regional Clans. Small communities that were close knit and survived on nature through farming and hunting. Continue reading