Dragons, Devils & Dinosaurs: A Symbiologist’s Guide to St George’s Day

argylesock says… I’m English and I’ve always been uncomfortable with the myth of St George killing a dragon. It sounds like propaganda about the English killing the Welsh. But apparently, it’s not so at all. It’s about defeating Saxon invaders… oops, they invaded anyway. We’ve been invaded so many times. Our islands seem to be irresistible – I get that, who’d want to live anywhere but here?


It’s St George’s Day today; here in England, this is the feast day of our Patron Saint.  We share him with a number of other countries including Moldova, Palestine and (perhaps unsurprisingly) Georgia, but we are particularly ‘into’ patron saints in the UK; our Union Flag is a mishmash of the flags of Saints George, Andrew and Patrick (St David – the Welsh patron Saint – was left out…nothing personal against David, mind, it was just that at the time the flag was created Wales was still considered part of the ‘Kingdom of England’.)

The other patron saints in the UK and Ireland seem somewhat logical choices: Patrick (Northern Ireland and Ireland, obviously) and David (Wales) were fairly local and significant in the bringing of Christianity to the ‘pagans’ of their respective countries.  St Andrew (St Peter’s brother) was in fact Palestinian, but gained particular meaning for the Scots for…

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About argylesock

I wrote a PhD about veterinary parasitology so that's the starting point for this blog. But I'm now branching out into other areas of biology and into popular science writing. I'll write here about science that happens in landscapes, particularly farmland, and about science involving interspecific interactions. Datasets and statistics get my attention. Exactly where this blog will lead? That's a journey that I'm on and I hope you'll come with me.
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2 Responses to Dragons, Devils & Dinosaurs: A Symbiologist’s Guide to St George’s Day

  1. As a Boy Scout, I have always honored good old Saint George, even if he did not slay a dragon.

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