The 1st of February, marks the feast day of St. Brigid – Lá Fhéile Bríde. St Brigid, dating back to the fifth century, is also known as Mary of the Gael or Muire na nGael (Our Lady of the Irish). She is one of the Patron Saints of Ireland, along with St Patrick and St Columcille.
She is patron of many things, including poetry, learning, healing, protection, blacksmithing, and livestock. The saint shares her name with a Celtic goddess and her feast day is also known as the Celtic festival, Imbolc.
2023 is also the first year of a new public holiday to celebrate St Brigid who is the first female saint to be honoured in this way. The new public holiday this year will take place on Monday, 6th February. The George’s Street Arcade will be open next Monday from 12 noon until 6 pm – our usual hours for a public holiday.
We hope you enjoy celebrating this great Irish woman, who many regard as an early Irish feminist icon, and we look forward to seeing some of you next Monday!
Many people will be familiar with the popular tradition of making crosses in St Brigid’s honour – if you would like to learn how to make the St. Brigid’s cross check out this video from the National Museum of Ireland!