St. Patrick’s Day is a holiday that honors St. Patrick and celebrates all things Irish. Every year on March 17th, some kids dress up in green and look for shamrocks, (a 4 leaf clover to some), while others try to catch the elusive St. Paddy’s Day leprechaun.
Luck o’ the Leprechaun
The St. Patrick’s Day leprechaun is an Irish fairy. Most fairies are delicate and pretty, but this one sure isn’t! He looks like an old man and stands at around two feet tall. Dressed in head-to-toe green, he sometimes has a pair of pointy ears and carries a big stick called a shillelagh, which he uses to scare anyone who tries to steal his gold. He prefers to be alone and spends his time either making shoes or searching for gold.
The original Irish name for these figures of folklore is lobaircin, meaning small-bodied fellow. In Irish mythology, a leprechaun is a type of male faerie said to inhabit the island of Ireland. They are a class of “faerie folk” associated in Irish mythology and folklore, as with all faeries, with the Tuatha Dé Danann and other quasi-historical peoples said to have inhabited Ireland before the arrival of the Celts.
Leprechauns usually take the form of old men who enjoy partaking in mischief. Their trade is that of a cobbler or shoemaker. They are said to be very rich, having many treasure crocks buried during war-time. According to legend, if anyone keeps an eye fixed upon one, he cannot escape, but the moment the gaze is withdrawn, he vanishes.
The Good Stuff About His Job
This leprechaun is one lucky guy. How else would you explain the fact that he finds the pot of gold at the end of every rainbow? With that much gold, he can travel around the world as many times as he wants, or buy anything his heart desires – and still have lots of dough left over.
The Bad Stuff About His Job
The St. Paddy’s Day leprechaun isn’t the best-looking guy around. He’s old, wrinkly, short and a little green – literally. On top of all that, he’s cursed! If you catch sight of him and keep your eyes locked, he can’t escape from your clutches. You can even force him to reveal the secret location of his precious pots of gold and he’ll have no choice but to spill the beans! But this sneaky leprechaun has a lot of tricks up his sleeve to make you look away just long enough for him to vanish, so you’ll never know the whereabouts of his hidden treasures.
How Much $$$ Does the Leprechaun Make?
Among the most popular of beliefs about leprechauns is that they are extremely wealthy and like to hide their gold in secret locations, which can only be revealed if a person were to actually capture and interrogate a leprechaun for its money. Another popular belief is that you may find a leprechaun and his pot of gold at the end of a rainbow.
Wanna know why you can never find the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow? It’s cuz this little fellow is always one step ahead of you and gets to it first! He has a huge stash of gold hidden away somewhere, making him the richest holiday figure around.
Have you seen one?
Leprechauns rarely appear in what would be classed as a folk tale. Stories about leprechauns are generally very brief and generally have local names and scenery attached to them.
In most tales and stories leprechauns are depicted as generally harmless creatures who enjoy solitude and live in remote locations, while in others they are depicted as ill-natured and mischievous, with a mind for cunning. Opinion is divided as to if they ever enjoy the company of other spirits. Although rarely seen in social situations, leprechauns are supposedly very well spoken and, if ever spoken to, could make good conversation.