Thursday’s Google Doodle honors St. David’s Day, a celebration in the United Kingdom of the patron saint of Wales.
The feast, which falls on March 1, also marks Wales’ national day and is often commemorated with festivals, dances and parades. On this day, many people will don the national dress and wear daffodils (the Welsh national symbol) or leeks (the symbol of St. David.)
Believed to have been born around 500 AD in Pembrokeshire, southern Wales, St. David was an early Christian missionary. His life and teachings are said to have inspired the choral works of Karl Jenkins and Arwel Hughes, Welsh composers of the mid-twentieth century who both composed work entitled “Dewi Sant” (St. David.)
Thursday’s Doodle celebrates the rich musical heritage of Wales, which is also known as the “Land of Song.” Wales has a tradition of choral singing dating back to the 19th century and is renowned for producing musical institutions, including The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, the Welsh National Opera, the BBC National Orchestra and Chorus of Wales, and a myriad of Welsh Male Voice Choirs. Welsh communities all over the world hold an annual eight day festival of literature, music, Welsh language and performance known as the Eisteddfod, usually beginning in August.
Google’s illustration showcases the country’s love for music. Sitting near a mountain, a woman wearing customary dress plays a Welsh Triple Harp. The mountain is Mt. Snowdon, the highest peak in Wales, and the song is the Welsh National Anthem. Daffodils surround the harpist, which symbolize the coming of spring when they bloom across Wales.
“Dydd Gŵyl Dewi Hapus!” is Welsh for Happy St. David’s Day.
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