Sant Jordi – a day for roses and books

In the Catalan culture, the 23rd April is Sant Jordi day. Lovers and people who like each other, share red roses and books as a present. Like with many of these days, legends are going way back in history.
The best known and most popular legend describes how Sant Jordi defeated a wild dragon to free a princess and an entire village. He did not marry the princess, but he gave her and the village freedom and the entire area converted to Christianity. Legend tells, that he is a protector of lovers, so red roses are given away every 23rd April – especially in Catalonia.
As a coincidence Spain declared 1926 the 23rd April as the national book day, the anniversary day of Miguel de Cervantes – the most famous book writer in Spain.
As a consequence during Sant Jordi, people share roses and books as an expression of their love to each other. In Girona, the streets had been full, nearly everybody having a nice decorated rose in their hands and many people having a book with them.
What a nice legend and tradition.