St Georges Day explained

St. George is the patron saint of England (and scouting) and St. George's Day is always on the 23rd of April but it is not a public holiday.
The emblem of St. George is a red cross on a white background and forms part of the "Union Jack". It was introduced to this country in the 12th century by Richard I ("the lionheart") whose soldiers wore it on their tunics in the Crusades, although St. George was heard of as early as in the 8th century.
In the Middle Ages the dragon was often used to symbolise the Devil and legend has it that St. George slew a dragon in either England or Libya, but it seems unlikely that he ever set foot in this country.
In reality it is thought that George (not yet a saint) was an officer in the Roman army who was beheaded in 303AD because he objected to the Roman treatment of Christians.
William Shakespeare later made sure that nobody would forget St. George by having King Henry V finish his pre-battle speech with the famous phrase, ‘Cry God for Harry, England and St. George!’
Funnily enough, Shakespeare was born on St. George's Day in 1564 and it is said that he died on the same day in 1616.


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