The traditions and customs of Northern Ireland are the result of a mixture of two cultures: British, with its strict principles and values, and Celtic, which originates in the history of the indigenous inhabitants of the Emerald Isle.
Unusual traditions of the Northern Irish
Each nation has its own rituals and habits that have developed over the centuries, but at the same time cause surprise among residents of another country.
In Northern Ireland , such traditions include:
- Love for horses. In most small towns of the country, horse racing is the only entertainment, and the horses participating in them become local celebrities.
- Receiving an unusual inheritance. The main value that a son can inherit from his father is a hat. Hinting at the humid climate of the island, the Irish often joke that a headdress in such weather is an indispensable thing.
- Unwillingness to eat at a party. With regard to food, the Irish adhere to a strange principle – either eat what you cooked yourself, or go to the pub. It is not customary to go to a party to have dinner or at least drink a glass of whiskey here.
- A sincere love for black humor. Even close friends in a private conversation can not resist not to let go of some kind of sharp “compliment” to each other.
- Love of arguments. Polemic on any topic is the national weakness of the Irish. They like to provoke and provoke the interlocutor until he agrees to enter into a debate, even on a very unambiguous issue.
Music and dance of Northern Ireland
Irish music has been preserved almost in its original form and has been little influenced by modern trends. The main musical instruments of the Irish are the violin, Celtic harp, psaltery, horn and bagpipes. Most of the folk songs of this country are more than 200 years old, the lyrics are written in two languages – Irish and English, and have, as a rule, a rural theme. National lyrics emphasize the pain and sadness associated with homesickness or the loss of a loved one.
The dance traditions of Northern Ireland were formed over several centuries and for the first time became a separate kind of folk art during the Middle Ages. Dances are very rhythmic, and their parameters depend on the situation: wedding dances differ from those performed on All Saints’ Day, and rural dances differ from urban ones.
Unlike the UK, in Northern Ireland St. Patrick’s Day (March 17) is a public holiday, which is celebrated on a grand scale in every city. According to legend, the patron saint of the island brought Christianity here and drove out all the snakes. Parades are organized in honor of St. Patrick – with songs, dances and costumed processions. The three main attributes of the celebration are green, shamrock and leprechauns.
Not a holiday, but the most favorite day of the week of the Irish is Monday. At least 4 Mondays a year are declared days off: June, August, October and Easter.