Saint Andrew’s Day 2022: Who is Saint Andrew and why Scotland celebrates him explained

 

By Thomas Mackay

Scots worldwide are set up to celebrate their patron saint, Saint Andrew, today – but some are wondering when this happens, why we celebrate him, and if it’s a bank holiday for Scotland? Here’s what you should know.

Also known as ‘Andermas’ or ‘the Feast of Saint Andrew’, St Andrew’s Day is Scotland’s official national day which commemorates the disciple of the New Testament within Christianity.

Similar to St Patrick’s Day in Ireland or St David’s Day in Wales, this national day brings together Scots and their families to celebrate Scottish culture with a variety of events, in fact even Google has recognised this occasion with a special Scottish Google Doodle

St Andrew’s Day always falls on November 30, that means in 2022 it falls on a Wednesday. On this day Scotland celebrates its patron saint, Andrew the Apostle, and the Saltire flag will be flown from all Scottish government buildings.

Who is Saint Andrew?

According to Christian teachings, Saint Andrew was one of Jesus Christ’s 12 disciples and St Andrew’s Day is our annual celebration dedicated to his legacy. The Bible teaches us that Andrew introduced Peter, his brother who is traditionally thought as the first Pope of the Roman Catholic Church, to Jesus.

However, Andrew would meet a tragic fate as a martyr for his beliefs as Romans decreed that he be crucified, however the apostle did not believe he was ‘worthy’ to die in the same manner as Jesus.

Therefore, Andrew was crucified on a diagonal cross on November 30, 60AD, and this X-shaped cross is the symbol of Scotland’s Saltire flag which commemorates his final day.

By 1320, Saint Andrew was finally recognised as the patron saint of Scotland following the signing of the Declaration of Arbroath which refers to him as the “gentle Saint Andrew” who would be Scotland’s “patron for ever” – a title retained to this day.

How do we celebrate St Andrew’s Day?

Scotland celebrates the event with ceilidhs (traditional music and dance), parades and Scottish food like haggis, neeps and tatties. According to The Scottish Sun, Glasgow will also have hundreds of pipe bands, punters and fire dancers coursing through the city’s West End for the St Andrew’s Day Torchlight Parade.

The date is also significant in other countries with Scottish connections in the world like Barbados who mark their national day of Independence along with St Andrew’s Day.

Is St Andrew’s Day a bank holiday?

St Andrew’s Day became officially recognised as a bank holiday by the Scottish Government in 2006, however, it is up to the institutions as to whether or not they wish to close on November 30.

Typically, if November 30 falls on a weekend then the bank holiday is moved to the following Monday or Friday. [ . . . ]

Source: Saint Andrew’s Day 2022: Who is Saint Andrew and why Scotland celebrates him explained

The prefect St Andrew’s Day Cocktail! 

Speyburn’s Rob Roy cocktail is the perfect serve to raise a toast to St Andrew this month. Named after a strong Scotsman, just like St Andrew, the Rob Roy is a Scotland inspired cocktail best enjoyed on an autumnal evening by the fireplace.

Speyburn’s Rob Roy cocktail is the perfect serve to raise a toast to St Andrew this month…

Named after a strong Scotsman, just like St Andrew, the Rob Roy is a Scotland inspired cocktail best enjoyed on an autumnal evening by the fireplace. Easily recreated at home with minimal ingredients and equipment, this cocktail showcases Speyburn’s 10 Years Old beautifully, creating a sweet and full-bodied flavour.

 

Ingredients

50ml (2oz) Speyburn 10 Years Old25ml (1oz) Sweet vermouth2 dashes (3 dashes) of Angostura bitters Garnish: Cherry

Glassware

Rocks Ice: Cubed

Method

Add all your ingredients to a short glass before filling with ice and stirring for 15-25 seconds.Flavours

Fruity, sweet, spiced, aromatic

About Speyburn 10 Years Old, 40% ABV, £28.75

Matured for a decade in a combination of American Oak ex-bourbon and ex-sherry casks, Speyburn’s award-winning 10 Year Old Single Malt embodies the rich, fresh sweetness of the Speyside region.

Deep, complex and well-balanced, notes of fresh fruit, toffee and butterscotch come through. Delicious and easy-to-drink, the expression offers a long, smooth finish. Fantastic value for money, Speyburn’s 10 Year Old would make a great gift for any whisky-lover this Christmas, or a fantastic addition to your at-home Christmas bar.

Source: St Andrew’s Day Cocktail! – The Scots Magazine

Great classical music inspired by the British countryside

The British countryside has inspired many of the great classical composers. Jeremy Pound from BBC Music Magazine selects his five favourite pieces that evoke the atmosphere of nature and landscape

By Fergus Collins

Music has a unique power to convey emotion and atmosphere. It can summon the imagination, stir the soul and evoke memories. For centuries, great composers have walked in the countryside to find creative stimulation and many have been inspired to capture and evoke the mood and the feel of the places they encountered. Birdsong, wind in the trees, a river running – all these have been the source of many wonderful compositions. And music also has the power to transport us, the listeners, to sweeping downland, meadows of wildflowers or a storm in a woodland.

In a recent BBC Countryfile Magazine podcast – the Plodcast – Jeremy Pound of BBC Music Magazine took Plodcast host Fergus Collins for a walk in the Cotswolds to talk about which composers’ works were the most evocative of the British countryside. The Cotswold Hills and the nearby Malvern Hills were, it seems, particularly fertile landscapes for composers such as Ralph Vaughan Williams and Edward Elgar. You can listen to this podcast episode here. 

You can also listen the Spotify playlist for this podcast episode.

Five great pieces of music inspired by the British countryside

So when you can’t get out to the countryside yourself, why not tune in to stunning music that brings the natural world into your living room? From the song of a skylark above the downlands of southern England to the ancient brooding presence of a Dorset heath, these five works – selected by Jeremy Pound of BBC Music Magazine – summon uplifting and mood-changing visions of the green outdoors. But let’s add to this list – please do tell us of your own

Ralph Vaughan Williams

The Lark Ascending

In this gorgeous work written in 1914, a solo violin represents the lark, spiralling and soaring ever upwards into the sky. It is accompanied by a subdued and almost ominous orchestral backdrop – does it represent dark clouds gathering? Much of Vaughan Williams’ work was inspired by rural folk songs and settings – another wonderful piece to enjoy is Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tullis.

Frederick Delius

On Hearing the First Cuckoo in Spring

Another bird, this time in the Bradford-born Delius’s short work for orchestra. In this instance, the call of the cuckoo is heard in the oboe and, later, the clarinet, while a soft, gentle melody in the strings promises sunny days ahead.

Arnold Bax

November Woods

Bax’s 1917 symphonic poem for orchestra has, as the title suggests, a wonderfully autumnal feel. A storm gathers in the first half but eventually the music subsides into a calmer mood. Few works conjure up the British weather so deftly.

Gustav Holst

Egdon Heath

Though the title of Holst’s 1927 orchestral work comes from a fictional location depicted by Thomas Hardy, the composer was initially inspired to write it by long walks in the south of England. The musical landscape here is rugged, and sometimes even foreboding.

Edward Elgar

Cello Concerto

Is an ageing Elgar looking back over recent global and personal trauma in this majestic but mournful 1919 work, or expressing the beauty of the British countryside? A bit of both, one feels – he himself associated a passage from it with the Malvern Hills.

Source: Great classical music inspired by the British countryside

Meet the cast of Netflix film The Wonder

The Wonder, which is now available on Netflix, features a mesmerising performance from the acting force that is Florence Pugh. But who else is in the cast?

From a middle-aged divorcee in 2013’s Gloria, a bereaved trans woman in 2017’s Oscar-winning A Fantastic Woman and two Orthodox Jewish women in love in 2018’s Disobedience, Chilean director Sebastian Lelio has long championed strong women in his films.

His latest film The Wonder, which is now available on Netflix, is no different, following English nurse Lib (Florence Pugh) as she’s hired to spend two weeks in an Irish village in 1862 and observe what many believe to be a religious miracle: an 11-year-old girl (Kíla Lord Cassidy) who claims not to have eaten for months but remains healthy.

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