St. Piran's Day

St. Piran St. Piran's Day

05 March 2017
On March 5 (St. Piran's Day), all those people march across the dunes to St. Piran's Cross to honor the patron saint of Cornwall there.
St. Piran's Cross
St. Piran's Cross
By most accounts, Piran sailed (involuntarily) from Ireland to Cornwall, after the Irish, jealous of his miraculous powers, set him adrift chained to a millstone on a stormy sea.  The waters immediately calmed and the saint floated safely to Cornwall, where he discovered his first disciples in the form of a badger, a fox and a bear.  Legend has it the saint also introduced the art of  tin-smelting to Cornwall when the heated tin rose from his black hearthstone in the form of a white cross - thus the black and white Cornish flag.
St. Piran himself
St. Piran himself
Like St. David of Wales, whose day is celebrated March 1, daffodils are associated with St. Piran.  However unlike St. David, whose abstemiousness led to his monks to nickname him "The Waterman" - and according to some legends to go so far as to try to poison him, Perrantide is celebrated with both literal and figurative high spirits - so much so that the phrase 'drunk as a perraner' was commonplace in 19th century Cornwall.  Unfortunately, I don't think even the jolly St. Piran can coax our daffodils into blooming on this week's wintry walkabout. (See the garden.)
© - Erica Obey
Photos © - George Baird