Every March 17th is the opportunity to celebrate Irish culture! It’s a day that has centuries of history behind it but continues to evolve each year as more and more of the world grows attached to that sparkling emerald isle. It’s a day for those with Irish blood in their veins and for those who love all things that the land of saints and scholars has to offer. So if baby’s due to arrive on March 17th but you want the spirited holiday to be with you and baby all year long then a St. Patrick’s Day-inspired baby girl, boy, and gender-neutral name should do the trick!
Where did St. Patrick’s Day come from?
You likely already understand March 17th as a vibrant day coming directly from the glittering emerald isle, but what you might not know is what it’s celebrating. St. Patrick, a patron saint of Ireland, was once commemorated with feasts and religious services all around the island to recognize his heroic, fabled deed of ridding the country of snakes. Today, however, the tradition is more fully a recognition of Irish culture! March 17th is believed to be the date of St. Patrick’s death, commemorated permanently as an Irish holiday. You can thank the millions of North Americans with Irish heritage for that!
What did St. Patrick do?
In the 5th century, a Roman-British Christian man on a missionary arrived in Ireland. But this wasn’t his first time on the mossy hills, and his goal this time was to convert the Irish from Paganism to Protestantism. Through centuries of exuberant storytelling becoming a long game of telephone, it’s said that St. Patrick rid Ireland of snakes in order to win over the people. However, the unearthed history points to a man with creative—but definitely more reasonably accomplished—practices to convert others and who found religion later in life, actually during his first time there, in a six-year period of captivity in Ireland. He would use the Irish language, fire as part of ritual, and the sun within the well-recognized Celtic cross, all as a way to make Christianity seem more approachable and natural to the people of Ireland.
How to choose a St. Patrick’s Day baby name!
Well, firstly, it should come as no surprise that St. Patrick’s Day baby names are largely Irish, Gaelic, or Celtic. But those facets of the mostly one-origin diamond can make the selection seem overwhelmingly large! So to commemorate March 17th more fully, maybe take into consideration the different ways St. Patrick infused Irish culture into the mix! Take names meaning “sun” or “little fire” or “ancient” as indications of the traditional. Or perhaps, take a look at names calling upon the features of the island or the way the culture proliferated for millennia through music! A St. Patrick’s Day baby name can invoke the powerful spirit of the fierce Irish people for a glimpse of their strength all life long.