SHAMROCKS, HARPS, AND SHILLELAGHS: The Story of the St. Patrick's Day Symbols by Edna Barth

SHAMROCKS, HARPS, AND SHILLELAGHS: The Story of the St. Patrick's Day Symbols

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A bigger deal here than in Ireland where there is ""more stress on the holy side,"" St. Patrick's Day customs haven't the diversity of sources or, by a long shot, the richness of symbols of other holidays surveyed in this series. Barth does her best, going on about the Irish flag, the pipe and fiddle, the top hat and cane, even dragging that least symbolic of objects, the potato, into her round-up; and filling in with a summary of the life and legends of St. Patrick ""himself"" and a sketchy history of Ireland's troubles from tribal days to 1948. But this is overextended as holiday explication, sorry indeed (despite the numerous quotes) as a sampling of Irish folklore and poetry, and--considering Barth's offhand listing of mulligatawny soup among the day's traditional dishes--about as reliable as a cornered leprechaun.

Pub Date: Sept. 26th, 1977
Publisher: Seabury