Google, the search engine giant, celebrates St Patrick's Day 2012 on 17 March with a new doodle to mark the arrival of Saint Patrick who brought Christianity to Ireland.
Google doodle has gone green and has been posted in select countries including Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Argentina and Denmark. The illustration was done based on the book "Book of Kells" by Jennifer Hom, who works as a designer at Google. "Book of Kells" is an illuminated manuscript Gospel book containing the Four Gospels.
The St Patrick's Eve is celebrated across the world with parades, pub crawls and green beer. People wear green clothes and grocery stores are filled with traditional Irish food including corned beef and cabbage. It is one of the most widely celebrated saint's days in the world that shows Irish tradition and culture.
Landmark buildings including London eye, Dubai's Burj al-Arab, the leaning Tower of Pisa and the Niagara Falls have already been illuminated with green lights to commemorate the day.
According to reports, initially the colour associated with Saint Patrick was blue. But over the years green has become popular due to Ireland's nickname as "The Emerald Isle."
There is a legend that Saint Patrick used the shamrock, a three-leaved plant, to explain the Holy Trinity. Hence using shamrocks and shamrock-inspired designs have become a significant part of the day.
It is also said that in Ireland there is a tradition where Catholics wear green and Protestants wear Orange. Both the religious sects are represented on their national flag. The white colour on the flag is symbolic of the peace between the two. Protestants don't celebrate saints. But Catholics celebrate the day wearing green clothes.
Another legend says that wearing green makes you invisible to leprechauns, the fairy creatures that would pinch anyone they could see. It is believed that these creatures cannot see you if wear green.