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Saint George’s day commemorates the death of this Saint, it was on April 23rd of April 303, the day that England has made its national day and is celebrated every year.
Saint George became famous because the legend tells that the patron of England slayed a dragon to save a distressed princess. (Ed. Typical fairytale *rolls eyes*)
Also Saint George is also the patron of other countries: Burglary, Ethiopia, Georgia and Portugal; and cities like Tombuctú (Mali). In Spain it’s the patron saint of some counties such as, Aragón, Cataluña and Balear Islands; and some cities: Alcoy (Alicante), Cáceres, Golosalvo (Albacete), Madrigueras (Albacete), Lucena (Córdoba) and Santurce (Vizcaya). In Argentina it’s the patron to the city of Pichanal (Salta). And the Scouts have Saint George as their patron as well because he was the patron of English military order.
SAINT GEORGE’S LEGEND
In Capadocia – Each version of the legend happens in a different place – but talks of a dragon that constantly attacked the kingdom. The villagers were afraid of the deaths and they made the decision of offering the dragon two sheep, but when the animals started to be scarce the people from the town had to start giving humans to the beast. The family that had lost one of their members received lots of riches as a compensation.
At this point is where the story may differ in two different ways:
The villagers were sick of how the royal family refused to give any member of their family to be devoured, so they forced the family to give the princess as an offer to the dragon.
The other version tells the story that one day the princess was the person chosen by a draw for the dragon’s offer
Anyway, the princess on her way to the dragon’s cave met George the knight, who killed the dragon and saved this distressed woman.
The end of the story tells that a rose grew from the dragon’s blood and Saint George gave it to the princess. The princess’s father gifted the soldier with lots of riches for his heroic deed and George decided to share it out with all the villagers.
This story is the reason why on every 23rd of April, men give roses to women.
WHY DID SAINT GEORGE BECOME THE PATRON OF ENGLAND?
Even though St George is an important figure in England, he never set foot on British shores.
The heroic story of this Saint became popular in 1483, when it was published in a book called “The Golden Legend.”
The decision to make him patron saint was by King Edward III when he formed the Order of the Garter in St. George’s name in 1450. The badge of the order depicts George slaying a dragon.
The cult of the St. George was further advanced by Henry V at the battle of Agincourt
And in 1415 St. George became the official patron saint of England.