By George! The top 10 St George's Day facts you never knew!
Check out the lesser known trivia surrounding England's patron saint!By Dave Lancaster |
11:56 23 April 2014
St George is one of the most celebrated Englishmen to have ever lived, right? And he slayed a dragon, didn't he? Wrong on both counts!
Join us as we put the myths to rest and reveal the facts behind St George!
- St George isn't English. He was born in 270 in Cappadocia which nowadays is known as Eastern Turkey.
- St George didn't slay a dragon but met a bloody end himself. The dragon of the popular tale is more likely to represent a devil, of which George's faith was unwavering in its condemnation of. When George rebelled against the persecution of Christians in Rome, he was tortured but never abandoned his faith right up until he was beheaded on April 23rd 303 AD.
- A quarter of English people are unaware who their patron saint is.
- St George is a saint of much more than just England! George is also the patron saint of chivalry, soldiers, farmers, people with leprosy, archers and scouting! He's also the patron saint of Greece, Portugal, Germany and Lithuania!
- Since the 4th century, Georgia sees St George as their patron saint. They have 365 Orthodox churches (one for each day of the year) named in his honour.
- St George died on the same date that one of England's finest writers - William Shakespeare - was born (April 23rd).
- St George's flag was brought to England in the 12th century and used by Richard The Lion Heart and soldiers to wear in order to avoid confusion in the heat of battle.
- St George is seen by Christians as one of the Fourteen Holy Helpers.
- The first St George's Day was in 1222.
- The English don't really know when St George's Day is. A poll by British Future found that 40% of Brits knew that St George's Day landed on April 23rd. However, 71% knew when America celebrated its Independence Day. As a nation we are more likely to celebrate drinking on St Patrick's Day than we are doing something for old St George.
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