Shamrock: "A plant with trifoliate leaves, used (according to a late tradition) by St. Patrick to illustrate the doctrine of the Trinity, and hence adopted as the national emblem of Ireland; a spray or leaf of this plant." (courtesy the OED Word of the Day).
"Well, then. Now. I'll begin at the beginnin'. A fine soft day in the spring, it was, when the train pulled into Castletown, three hours late as usual, and himself got off. He didn't have the look of an American tourist at all about him. Not a camera on him; what was worse, not even a fishin' rod." (courtesy of John Ford's most excellent The Quiet Man. Did you know it's based on a story by Maurice Walsh?
"In the Middle Ages, beer (which is made from cereal grain) was one of the safest, most nutritious everyday drinks for northern Europeans - since grapes don't grow in the colder climate, and water was often polluted.
Occasionally, a batch would go bad, and people would blame the devil for the problem. To keep the demons away, brewers would place religious statues in their brew house, and ask the local priest to bless a new batch" (courtesy The Little Black Book, Six-minute reflections on the weekly Gospels of Lent 2009)
"May the road rise up to meet you. May the wind always be at your back. May the sun shine warm upon your face, and rains fall soft upon your fields. And until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of His hand." (an old Irish blessing)
Happy Saint Patrick's Day.