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Friday, November 30, 2007

St. Andrews Day!

Celebrating St Andrew's Day
On this special day, 45 properties in the care of Historic Scotland will be open for free.St Andrew's Day is a celebration of the best of Scotland – traditions, food, and ceilidhs.The day is also the anniversary of the return of the Stone of Destiny to Scotland.The stone was returned to Scotland on 30 November 1996, 700 years after it was taken to England by Edward I.It now rests in the Crown Room at Edinburgh Castle beside the Scottish crown jewels (the Honours of Scotland).
About St Andrew
There are a variety of explanations as to how St Andrew came to be associated with Scotland. According to the most traditional tale, when Emperor Constantine of Rome had ordered Andrew's relics to be moved to Constantinople, an angel appeared to St Rule (also known as St Regulus) in a dream and told him to take some of the relics to the ends of the earth for safekeeping.
He obediently took relics from Andrew's tomb and sailed north with the remains until he was shipwrecked on the east coast of Scotland, where he established the city of St Andrews. The relics were placed in a specially constructed chapel.In 1160, the chapel was replaced by St Andrew's Cathedral which became an important medieval pilgrimage destination.
Much of the cathedral is in ruins today, but St Rule's Tower is one of the buildings that remains.A plaque among the ruins of St Andrew's cathedral shows modern visitors where the relics were kept.According to another tale, the Pictish King Angus mac Fergus adopted St Andrew as patron followinging the appearance of a saltire in the sky immediately before his victory at Athelstaneford against the Angles of Northumbria.
One of the first times that Andrew was recognised officially as the patron saint of Scotland was at the signing of the Declaration of Arbroath in 1320. This was a declaration signed by many of the Scottish noblemen, as well as Robert the Bruce, asserting Scotland's independence from England.
May God bless all who live in Scotland!
Hail Caledonia!

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