I was checking out the World of Tanks website to see what the news feed had to offer and was excited to see an article about St. Patrick's Day events and discounts. I clicked on the article and scrolled passed the ads for the premium German tanks (Would it have been to much to ask for a separate article?) and came across the Mission cleverly titled "Luck of the Irish". Being of Irish descent I'm always happy to see events for St. Patrick's Day, but my happiness was short lived when I noticed the award for completing the Mission:
That is clearly a Four Leaf Clover, not a Shamrock.
This is a Shamrock:
I know a lot you are thinking, "it's just a clover with four leaves instead of three, it's no big deal". But it is a big deal. I quote an article from IrelandCalling.com to help explain what the Shamrock means to Ireland. Here's a link to the original article: IrelandCalling.com Shamrock – National Flower of Ireland.
"The shamrock, a small clover which is now the national flower of Ireland, was an important symbol to the ancient Irish Druids as a plant naturally displaying the triad with its three heart-shaped leaves: The Celts believed that everything important in the world came in threes; the three dominions of earth, sky and sea, the three ages of man, and phases of the moon; so a plant with three leaves would have been held in high regard."
"St. Patrick also used the shamrock in his teaching: The shamrock was thought to have mystical properties and the ability to predict the weather; its leaves turn skyward when a storm is brewing.
It is believed that St Patrick, on seeing the importance of this small plant to the Druids, used the shamrock to illustrate the Christian teachings of the Holy Trinity, thus spreading the word of Christianity throughout the land in a way that appealed to its people. Many of the Druid high priests are thought to have converted to Christianity, becoming Bishops following St Patrick’s teachings."
"Ireland’s best known national symbol: The shamrock became a symbol of rebellion against the Crown in the 19th century and anyone caught wearing one, risked the hangman’s noose! Today it is Ireland’s most well know national symbol recognized throughout the world. It is used as a logo by many Irish companies and organisations such as Aer Lingus, and on the 17th of March the shamrock is displayed on anything from beer to bunting to over-large novelty hats as part of the St Patrick’s Day celebrations. In Celtic lore the shamrock has always been a charm against evil which relates to the modern belief in the four leaf clover as a good luck charm. Some believe the shamrock even has the power to break a leprechaun’s curse."
As you can see the Shamrock means a great deal to Ireland. To confuse it with the Four Leaf Clover as the symbol of St. Patrick's Day, or the symbol of Ireland, is a mistake that, frankly, I'm tired of seeing.
I know that most who read this will see this post as a rant, but I'm a quite proud of my heritage and hate to see a major symbol of Irish culture be misrepresented.
Éirinn go Brách!