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Happy St. Patrick's Day! On this site I will profile St. Patrick's Day year 'round:)as well as VAN "THE MAN" MORRISON Please sign my guestbook and let me know what you think of the site and what your favourite item/memory of St. Patrick's Day is:), look below for the link to my VAN MORRISON TRADE SITE, e-mail me if you see anything you'd like or if you see anything which I need,remember to visit the links and click on the pictures as well!!:):) ========================================================================== =========================================================================== =========================================================================== ============================================================================ ============================================================================ =========================================================================== =============================================================== ================================================================ =========================================================================== ============================================================================= ~ST. PATRICK'S DAY~ A Wee Bit O' Fun Saint Patrick's Day (March 17th), is an Irish holiday honoring Saint Patrick, the missionary credited with converting the Irish to Christianity (in the A.D. 400's). Saint Patrick was not actually Irish. Historical sources report that he was born around 373 A.D. in either Scotland (near the town of Dumbarton) or in Roman Britain (the Romans left Britain in 410 A.D.). His real name is believed to be Maewyn Succat (he took on Patrick, or Patricus, after he became a priest). He was kidnapped at the age of 16 by pirates and sold into slavery in Ireland (I am not making this up). During his 6-year captivity (he worked as a shepherd), he began to have religious visions, and found strength in his faith. He finally escaped (after voices in one of his visions told him where he could find a getaway ship) and went to France, where he became a priest (and later a bishop). When he was about 60 years old, St. Patrick travelled to Ireland to spread the Christian word. It's said that Patrick had an unusually winning personality, and that helped him win converts. He used the shamrock, which resembles a three-leafed clover, as a metaphor to explain the concept of the Trinity (father, son, holy spirit). Legend has it that Saint Patrick drove all the snakes out of Ireland -- that they all went into the sea and drowned. Poor snakes. I don't know why he would want to do this, except that the snake was a revered pagan symbol, and perhaps this was a figurative tale alluding to the fact that he drove paganism out of Ireland. In America, Saint Patrick's Day is a basically a time to wear green and party. The first American celebration of Saint Patrick's Day was in Boston, Massachusetts, in 1737. As the saying goes, on this day "everybody is Irish!" Over 100 U.S. cities now hold Saint Patrick's Day parades, the largest held in New York City. Green is associated with Saint Patrick's Day because it is the color of spring, Ireland, and the shamrock. Leprechauns are also associated with this holiday, although I'm not sure why. Leprechauns of legend are actually mean little creatures, with the exception of the Lucky Charms guy. They were probably added later on because capitalists needed something cute to put on greeting cards. What's good luck on Saint Patrick's Day?: Finding a four-leaf clover (that's double the good luck it usually is). Wearing green. (School children have started a little tradition of their own -- they pinch classmates who don't wear green on this holiday). Kissing the blarney stone. An Irish blessing to take with you today: May your blessings outnumber the shamrocks that grow And may trouble avoid you wherever you go. Glossary O' Terms Erin Go Braugh Ireland Forever Leprechaun Irish fairy. Looks like a small, old man (about 2 feet tall), often dressed like a shoemaker,with a cocked hat and a leather apron. According to legend, leprechauns are aloof and unfriendly, live alone, and pass the time making shoes...they also possess a hidden pot of gold. Treasure hunters can often track down a leprechaun by the sound of his shoemaker's hammer. If caught, he can be forced (with the threat of bodily violence) to reveal the whereabouts of his treasure, but the captor must keep their eyes on him every second. If the captor's eyes leave the leprechaun (and he often tricks them into looking away), he vanishes and all hopes of finding the treasure are lost. Blarney stone The Blarney Stone is a stone set in the wall of the Blarney Castle tower in the Irish village of Blarney. Kissing the stone is supposed to bring the kisser the gift of persuasive eloquence (blarney). The castle was built in 1446 by Cormac Laidhiv McCarthy (Lord of Muskerry) -- its walls are 18 feet thick (necessary to thwart attacks by Cromwellians and William III's troops). Thousands of tourists a year still visit the castle. The origins of the Blarney Stone's magical properties aren't clear, but one legend says that an old woman cast a spell on the stone to reward a king who had saved her from drowning. Kissing the stone while under the spell gave the king the ability to speak sweetly and convincingly. It's tough to reach the stone -- it's between the main castle wall and the parapet. Kissers have to lie on their back and bend backward (and downward), holding iron bars for support. Can you imagine kissing something that has had people's lips all over it for 500 years? Yuck! ========================================================================= CARRICKFERGUS I wish I was in Carrickfergus,Only for nights in BallygrantI would swim over the deepest ocean,For my love to findBut the sea is wide and I cannot cross overAnd neither have I the wings to flyI wish I could meet a handsome boatsmanTo ferry me over, to my love and die 2. My childhood days bring back sad reflectionsOf happy times I spent so long ago,My boyhood friends and my own relationsHave all passed on now like melting snow.But I'll spend my days in endless roaming,Soft is the grass, my bed is free.Ah, to be back now in Carrickfergus,On that long road down to the sea. 3. But in Kilkenny, it is reported,On marble stones there as black as inkWith gold and silver I would support her,But I'll sing no more 'till I get a drink.For I'm drunk today, and I'm seldom sober,A handsome rover from town to town,Ah, but I'm sick now, my days are numbered,Come all you young men and lay me down. ------------------------------------------------------------------------ IRISH HEARTBEAT Words and Music by Van Morrison Oh won't you stay, stay awhile With your own ones. Don't ever stray, stray so far From your own ones. This old world is so cold. Don't care nothin' for your soul You share with your own ones. Don't rush away, rush away From your own ones. Just one more day, one more day With your own ones. For the world is so cold. Don't care nothin' for your soul You share with your own ones. Bridge: There's a stranger and he's Standing at your door. May be your best friend Might be your brother, You may never know. I'm going back, going back To my own ones. Back to talk, talk awhile With my own ones. For the world is so cold. Don't care nothing for your soul You share with your own ones. ------------------------------------------------------------------------ ROVING BLADE (NEWRY HIGHWAYMAN) In Newry town, where I was bred and born, Stephen's Green now I lie in scorn. I served my time there to the saddlers' trade, And I always was a roving blade. At seventeen I took a wife, And I loved her dearer than I loved my life; And for to keep her both neat and gay, I went a-robbing on the King's highway. I never robbed any poor man yet, Nor any tradesman did I beset;*) But I robbed lords and their ladies fair, And brought their jewels to my heart's delight. To Covent Garden I made my way, With my dear wife for to see the play; Lord Fielding's men did me pursue, And taken was I by the cursed crew. My father cried, "My darling son." My wife she cried, "I am undone." My mother tore her white locks and cried that in the cradle I should have died. When I am dead and in my grave A flashy funeral pray let me have; Six highwaymen for to carry me. Give them broadswords and sweet liberty. Six pretty fair maids to bear my Pall, Give them white garlands and ribbons all.*) And when I'm dead they will speak the truth, He was a wild and a wicked youth. : I robbed Lord Golding I do declare, And Lady Mansel, in Grosvenor Square; I shut the shutters and bad them good night. And home I went then to my heart's delight. ------------------------------------------------------------------------- Gerald Griffin (1803-1840), after the Gaelic of Carol O'Daly EILEEN AROON 1. When, like the early rose, Eileen aroon! Beauty in childhood blows; Eileen aroon! When, like a diadem, Buds blush around the stem, Which is the fairest gem? Eileen aroon! 2. Is it the laughing eye? Eileen aroon! Is it the timid sigh? Eileen aroon! Is it the tender tone, Soft as the string'd harp's moan? Oh, it is the truth alone. Eileen aroon! 3. When, like the rising day, Eileen aroon! Love sends his early ray, Eileen aroon! What makes his dawning glow Changeless through joy or woe? Only the constant know - Eileen aroon! 4. I knew a valley fair, Eileen aroon! I knew a cottage there, Eileen aroon! Far in that valley's shade I knew a gentle maid, Flower of the hazel glade, Eileen aroon! 5. Who in the song so sweet, Eileen aroon! Who in the dance so sweet, Eileen aroon! Dear were her charms to me, Dearer her laughter free, Dearest her constancy, Eileen aroon! 6. Were she no longer true, Eileen aroon! What would her lover do? Eileen aroon! Fly with his broken chain, Far o'er the bounding main Never to love again, Eileen aroon! 7. Youth must with time decay Eileen aroon! Beauty must fade away, Eileen aroon! Castles are sacked in war, Chieftains are scattered far, Truth is a fixd star, Eileen aroon! ------------------------------------------------------------------------ RAGLAN ROAD On Raglan Road of an autumn day I saw her first and knew That her dark hair would weave a snare that I might one day rue. I saw the danger and I passed along the enchanted way and I said let grief be a fallen leaf at the dawning of the day. On Grafton Street in November we tripped lightly along the lay of a deep ravine where can be seen the worth of passions play. The queen of hearts still making tarts and I not making hay. Oh, I love too much and by such, by such is happiness thrown away. I gave her gifts of the mind I gave her the secret sign Known to the artists who have known the true Gods of sound and stone. And words and tint I did not stint, I gave her poems to say. With her own name there and her own dark hair like clouds over the fields of May. On a quiet street where old ghosts meet, I see her walking now away from me so hurriedly my reason must allow that I had loved not as I should a creature made of clay. When tha angel woos the clay he'll lose his wings at the dawn of the day. ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Young Roddy McCorley --------------------------------------------------------------------- Oh, see the fleet foot hosts of men who speed with faces wan. From farm stead and from thresher's cot along the banks of Ban.They come with vengeance in their eyes, too late, too late are theyFor young Roddy M'Corley goes to die on the Bridge of Toome today! Up the narrow street he stepped, smiling and proud and young. About the hemp rope on his neck, the golden ringlets clung.There's never a tear in his blue eyes, both glad and bright are they,As young Roddy M'Corley goes to die on the Bridge of Toome today!When he last stepped up that street his shining pike in hand. Behind him marched in grim array a stalwart earnest band.For Antrim Town! For Antrim Town! He led them to the fray,As young Roddy M'Corley goes to die on the Bridge of Toome today!There's never a one of all who die more bravely fell in fray than he who marches to his fate on the Bridge of Toome today.True to the last, true to the last, he treads the upward wayAnd young Roddy M'Corley goes to die on the Bridge of Toome today!As young Roddy M'Corley goes to die on the Bridge of Toome today! ------------------------------------------------------------------------ FLOATER (TOO MUCH TO ASK)(Words and Music by Bob Dylan) ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Down over the windowCome the dazzling sunlit raysThrough the back alleys, through the blindsAnother one of them endless daysHoney bees are buzzingLeaves begin to stirI'm in love with my second cousinI tell myself I could be happy forever with herI keep listening for footstepsBut I ain't never hearing anyFrom the boat, I fish for bullheadsI catch a lot, sometimes too manyA summer breeze is blowin'A squall is setting inSometimes it's just plain stupidTo get into any kind of windWell the old men 'round hereSometimes they get on bad termsWith the younger men,Old, young, age don't carry weightIt doesn't matter in the endOne of the boss' hangers-onSometimes comes to callAt times you least expectTryin' to bully you, strongarm you, Inspire you with fearIt has the opposite effectThere's a new grove of trees on the outskirts of townThe other one is long gone10 foot, 2 foot, 6 acrossBurns with the bark still onThey say times are hardIf you don't believe it you can follow your noseIt don't bother me, times are hard anywhereWe'll just have to see how it goesMy old man, he's like some feudal lordHe's got more lives than a catI've never seen him quarrel with my mother even onceThings come alive or they fall flatYou can smell the pine wood burnin'You can hear the school bell ringGot to get up near the teacher, if you canIf you wanna learn anythingRomeo, he said to Juliet, you got a poor complexionThat don't give your appearance a very youthful touchJuliet said back to Romeo,Why don't you just shove off,If it bothers you so muchThey all got outta here any way they couldCold rain can give you the shiversThey went down the Ohio, the Cumberland, the Tennessee, All the rest of them rebel riversIf you ever try to interfere with meOr cross my path again,You do so at the peril of your lifeI'm not quite as cool, or forgiving as I soundI've seen enough heartache and strifeMy grandfather was a duck trapper,He could do it with just dragnets and ropesMy grandmother could sew new dresses out of old cloth,I don't know if they had any dreams or hopesI had 'em once, though I supposeTo go along with all the ring dancing,Christmas carols and all the Christmas evesI left all my dreams and hopesBuried under tobacco leavesNot always easy kicking someone out Got to wait awhile, it can be an unpleasant taskSometimes somebody wants you to give something upAnd tears or not, it's too much to ask ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ MOONLIGHT(Words and Music by Bob Dylan) ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The seasons they are turning and my sad heart is yearningTo hear again the songbird's sweet melodious toneWon't you meet me out in the moonlight aloneThe dusky light the day is losingOrchids, poppies, black eyed susanThe earth and sky that melts with flesh and boneWon't you meet me out in the moonlight aloneThe air is thick and heavy all along the leveeWhere the geese into the countryside have flownWon't you meet me out in the moonlight aloneWell, I'm preaching peace and harmonyThe blessings of tranquilityYet I know when the time is right to strikeI take you 'cross the river, dearYou've no need to linger hereI know the kinds of things you likeThe clouds are turning crimson, the leaves fall from the limbs 'nThe branches cast their shadows over stoneWon't you meet me out in the moonlight aloneThe boulevards of cypress trees, the masquerade of birds and beesThe petals pink and white, the wind has blownWon't you meet me out in the moonlight aloneThe trailing moss in mystic glow, the purple blossom soft as snowMy tears keep flowing to the seaDoctor, lawyer, indian chief, it takes a thief to catch a thiefFor whom does the bell toll for, love?It tolls for you and meOld pulse's running through my palm, the sharp hills are rising fromYellow fields with twisted oaks that growWon't you meet me out in the moonlight alone =========================================================================== ~HALLOWEEN~ Halloween's origins date back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain (pronounced sow-in). The Celts, who lived 2,000 years ago in the area that is now Ireland, the United Kingdom, and northern France, celebrated their new year on November 1. This day marked the end of summer and the harvest and the beginning of the dark, cold winter, a time of year that was often associated with human death. Celts believed that on the night before the new year, the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred. On the night of October 31, they celebrated Samhain, when it was believed that the ghosts of the dead returned to earth. In addition to causing trouble and damaging crops, Celts thought that the presence of the otherworldly spirits made it easier for the Druids, or Celtic priests, to make predictions about the future. For a people entirely dependent on the volatile natural world, these prophecies were an important source of comfort and direction during the long, dark winter. To commemorate the event, Druids built huge sacred bonfires, where the people gathered to burn crops and animals as sacrifices to the Celtic deities. During the celebration, the Celts wore costumes, typically consisting of animal heads and skins, and attempted to tell each other's fortunes. When the celebration was over, they re-lit their hearth fires, which they had extinguished earlier that evening, from the sacred bonfire to help protect them during the coming winter. By A.D. 43, Romans had conquered the majority of Celtic territory. In the course of the four hundred years that they ruled the Celtic lands, two festivals of Roman origin were combined with the traditional Celtic celebration of Samhain. The first was Feralia, a day in late October when the Romans traditionally commemorated the passing of the dead. The second was a day to honor Pomona, the Roman goddess of fruit and trees. The symbol of Pomona is the apple and the incorporation of this celebration into Samhain probably explains the tradition of "bobbing" for apples that is practiced today on Halloween. By the 800s, the influence of Christianity had spread into Celtic lands. In the seventh century, Pope Boniface IV designated November 1 All Saints' Day, a time to honor saints and martyrs. It is widely believed today that the pope was attempting to replace the Celtic festival of the dead with a related, but church-sanctioned holiday. The celebration was also called All-hallows or All-hallowmas (from Middle English Alholowmesse meaning All Saints' Day) and the night before it, the night of Samhain, began to be called All-hallows Eve and, eventually, Halloween. Even later, in A.D. 1000, the church would make November 2 All Souls' Day, a day to honor the dead. It was celebrated similarly to Samhain, with big bonfires, parades, and dressing up in costumes as saints, angels, and devils. Together, the three celebrations, the eve of All Saints', All Saints', and All Souls', were called Hallowmas. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- History of Halloween, like any other festival's history is inspired through traditions that have transpired through ages from one generation to another. We follow them mostly as did our dads and grandpas. And as this process goes on, much of their originality get distorted with newer additions and alterations. It happens so gradually, spanning over so many ages, that we hardly come to know about these distortions. At one point of time it leaves us puzzled, with its multicolored faces. Digging into its history helps sieve out the facts from the fantasies which caught us unaware. Yet, doubts still lurk deep in our soul, especially when the reality differs from what has taken a deep seated root into our beliefs. The history of Halloween Day, as culled from the net, is being depicted here in this light. This is to help out those who are interested in washing off the superficial hues to reach the core and know things as they truly are. 'Trick or treat' may be an innocent fun to relish on the Halloween Day. But just think about a bunch of frightening fantasies and the scary stories featuring ghosts, witches, monsters, evils, elves and animal sacrifices associated with it. They are no more innocent. Are these stories a myth or there is a blend of some reality? Come and plunge into the halloween history to unfurl yourself the age-old veil of mysticism draped around it. Behind the name... Halloween, or the Hallow E'en as they call it in Ireland , means All Hallows Eve, or the night before the 'All Hallows', also called 'All Hallowmas', or 'All Saints', or 'All Souls' Day, observed on November 1. In old English the word 'Hallow' meant 'sanctify'. Roman Catholics, Episcopalians and Lutherians used to observe All Hallows Day to honor all Saints in heaven, known or unknown. They used to consider it with all solemnity as one of the most significant observances of the Church year. And Catholics, all and sundry, was obliged to attend Mass. The Romans observed the holiday of Feralia, intended to give rest and peace to the departed. Participants made sacrifices in honor of the dead, offered up prayers for them, and made oblations to them. The festival was celebrated on February 21, the end of the Roman year. In the 7th century, Pope Boniface IV introduced All Saints' Day to replace the pagan festival of the dead. It was observed on May 13. Later, Gregory III changed the date to November 1. The Greek Orthodox Church observes it on the first Sunday after Pentecost. Despite this connection with the Roman Church, the American version of Halloween Day celebration owes its origin to the ancient (pre-Christian) Druidic fire festival called "Samhain", celebrated by the Celts in Scotland, Wales and Ireland. Samhain is pronounced "sow-in", with "sow" rhyming with cow. In Ireland the festival was known as Samhein, or La Samon, the Feast of the Sun. In Scotland, the celebration was known as Hallowe'en. In Welsh it's Nos Galen-gaeof (that is, the Night of the Winter Calends. According to the Irish English dictionary published by the Irish Texts Society: "Samhain, All Hallowtide, the feast of the dead in Pagan and Christian times, signalizing the close of harvest and the initiation of the winter season, lasting till May, during which troops (esp. the Fiann) were quartered. Faeries were imagined as particularly active at this season. From it the half year is reckoned. also called Feile Moingfinne (Snow Goddess).(1) The Scottish Gaelis Dictionary defines it as "Hallowtide. The Feast of All Soula. Sam + Fuin = end of summer."(2) Contrary to the information published by many organizations, there is no archaeological or literary evidence to indicate that Samhain was a deity. The Celtic Gods of the dead were Gwynn ap Nudd for the British, and Arawn for the Welsh. The Irish did not have a "lord of death" as such. Thus most of the customs connected with the Day are remnants of the ancient religious beliefs and rituals, first of the Druids and then transcended amongst the Roman Christians who conquered them. ============================================================================ Click on the pictures below to get into their Respective Sites!!:) ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- ====================================================================== ======================================================================= ======================================================================= =================================================================== ~HALLOWEEN-MICHAEL MYERS~ ------------------------------------------------------------------ =================================================================== ">
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