St Georges Day
Today is St Georges Day. St George is one of the best loved saints and his image can be found all over the Middle East and he is also the patron saint of England. Maybe being a Protestant country, England did not bother too much with its patron saint, but his flag, the red cross on white is making a comeback, as the people of the United Kingdom become more aware of their own countries within the union, especially at sporting events such as football, rugby and cricket.
The Resurrection of Christ by Piero della Francesca is on display at teh Museo Civico in his home town of Sansepolcro. It is a wonderful painting and also shows Christ, the dying and (now) resurrecting godman, holding the flag of Saint George as he rises from his tomb over the sleeping Roman soldiers in their impressive armour, all set in the beautiful Tuscan countryside as seen around Arezzo.
It should also be noted that St George is often associated with Green George, a tree spirit, celebrated by amongst others, the gypsies of Transylvania and Romania, the Slavs of Carinthia and the English, in the form of Jack-in-the-Green. Part of the celebrations involves a ritual slaughter and re-birth, as the leaves grow back on the trees, just as they are now, all over Europe.