Ireland, the home of scenic views, brave people, and great traditions, can be described in many ways. Whether you’re an Irishman or a visitor from another country, you’ve undoubtedly heard of Irish symbols, elements, and mythological creatures. Let’s find out what else the Emerald Isle is famous as of now.
Guinness is a dry stout with a nearly 300-year history and tradition, and is perhaps one of the first things that comes to mind when thinking about Ireland. This company, which was founded in 1759, quickly became an Irish trademark and a symbol of high-quality alcohol. It’s served in Irish pubs in over a hundred countries around the world, and the dark hue and coffee and chocolate notes make it instantly recognized. The Guinness Storehouse, a seven-story museum in Dublin, is dedicated to the Irish stout. Curiously, the warehouse was also the site of another world-famous Guinness creation: the Guinness Book of World Records, which sprang from a disagreement between the managing director of the company and the clients of a pub.
Knitwear from Ireland is well-known well beyond the island’s boundaries. The most famous example is the Aran sweater, also known as the Irish or the fishermen jumper, as it was the one that brought fame to the beautiful Irish garments and traditional Celtic inspired stitches and patterns. Aran sweaters were traditionally male garments, but these days they are proudly worn by women as well. These clothing have swiftly become a fashion mainstay, and are now worn by people from all walks of life, including celebrities, fashion icons, designers, and regular folks.
St. Patrick’s Day
Without the well-known St. Paddy’s Day, this guide would be incomplete. After all, it is the world’s most famous national holiday! Every year on March 17th, people in Ireland, as well as others from almost every continent, commemorate the patron saint of Ireland, as well as the Irish culture and heritage. It’s a loud, joyous event marked by parades, folk music, and green costumes. It’s traditional to exchange gifts during the day, so if you’re looking for a meaningful gift for your Irish husband or friend, a classic wool knit Aran fisherman sweater for men, like the ones we’ve discussed before, is always a safe bet.
The most popular national symbol of Ireland is the shamrock, as from ancient times it was believed to be the symbol of spring, the rebirth of nature, and renewal. Later on, it was linked to St. Patrick, since the legend says that he used the shamrock to explain the concept of the Holy Trinity when he preached Christianity to the pagan locals of the Emerald Isle. The second national symbol, the Celtic harp, which is also depicted on the country’s coat of arms, was supposed to signify the sovereignty of Ireland in early Irish mythology, according to recorded materials from the National Library of Ireland. It is also the symbol of the Guinness company that we’ve already mentioned before. As per the other national symbols, the sessile oak is the national tree, while the Northern lapwing was declared the national bird 30 years ago.
There are very few people who have never heard of Oscar Wilde’s “The Portrait of Dorian Gray” or James Joyce’s “Ulysses.” Aside from its great traditions, Ireland has spawned some of the world’s most renowned and brilliant authors and poets, whose works are still read and studied by regular readers as well as academics at the world’s top institutions. During the last century, four Irishmen have won the Nobel Prize for literature, and the influence of the Irish in universal literature is an undeniably important one.