Saint George’sday is a special holiday inCataloniabecause Saint George is the patron saint. This day is celebrated on 23 of March and the tradition says that people should give roses and books as present to loved people. During this day, in all cities and towns inCataloniacan be seen people in the streets selling and buying books and flowers as a street market.
This holiday cannot be understood without Saint George legend, this fantastic story talks about dragons, princes and knights. This legend is situated in a little kingdom in Catalonia called Montblanc. People in this place were attacked and intimidate by a Dragon. They gave to the monster animals to eat, because if not, the Dragon would eat them. But one day, they realised that the Dragon had eaten all the animals, so they decided to make a draw, so that would say what person would be given to the monster. But the first person was the princes. When she was going to the cave where the Dragon was, suddenly appear a knight, called Saint George, riding a white horse. Saint George fought the Dragon and won it. From the injury of the Dragon and its blood grew up a nice red rosebush. Saint George gave a rose to the princes as a present.
Is difficult to know when was the first date when giving roses in Saint George’s was a present. But some facts explain that in XV century there was a fair of Saint George’s roses. This event, at the same time, is related with some parties that aristocratic society celebrated where roses and other flowers were given to women.
Centuries later, the habit of giving roses to loved person has been preserved until now. But, nowadays, we also give books because the same day is Book’s day in order to commemorate the famous writer Miguel de Cervantes.
Text: Mar Mampel