07-14-18 Cassandra O’Leary

Friday, February 10, 2012

Twelve Pairs of Gloves

Twelve Pairs of Gloves
As I was perusing information on Leap Year, I came across some really interesting tidbits of information about this extra calendar day.
Leap Day is in February because February used to be the last month of the year.
According to an old 5th century Irish legend, St. Bridget petitioned St. Patrick to allow women to propose to men every four years. Thus balancing the traditional roles of men and women much like Leap Day balances the traditional calendar year.
In America we have Sadie Hawkins day dances where the girl asks the guy to be her date, and it is generally celebrated in Leap Year.
In Scotland it is considered bad luck to be born on Leap Day. 1288 Scotland passed a law that allowed women to propose to men during Leap Year. Any man who declined had to pay a fine, which could be anything from a kiss to a new silk dress.
In Denmark the old Leap Year tradition goes, if the woman proposes and the gent declines he owes her twelve pairs of gloves. One pair for each month to hide the fact she is not wearing an engagement ring.

Greece considers it unlucky to marry in a Leap Year, and especially on Leap Day.
The Honor Society of Leap Year Day Babies is an organization for persons born on Leap Day.
According to the Guinness Book of Records, there is a family who produced three consecutive generations born on February 29 and there are different records of children in the same families all born on February 29th..
As a writer, I can see many, many story ideas embedded in these fun facts. I personally don’t know anyone born on February 29th. I have a friend whose husband and their first daughter were both born on Valentine's Day.
Do you know anyone with a birthday on February 29th? Or a family whose birthdays fall on the same day?


Judith Ashley said...

Interesting post, Diana. My Dad and I had the same date (19th) in different months and obviously in different years (LOL). Friends of my son have birthdays the same day as mine also - but I don't know anyone born on the Leap Day.

Paisley Kirkpatrick said...

Waving Diana. How interesting the way different countries celebrate or curse this day. A smart woman might propose on the 29th just to get those twelve pairs of gloves...that's my Danish heritage showing. :)

Robin Weaver said...

Interesting blog, Diana! I don't know anyone born on leap year.

Meggan Connors said...

Great post!

I don't know anyone born on a leap year, but my grandmother and both of my Dad's sisters were born on October 31.

Scary. :)

Sarah Raplee said...

Mention 'the history of a holiday tradition' and I'm instantly hooked! Fascinating!

I don't know anyone born on Leap Day. Dad and his youngest brother, Link, were both born on Feb. 12th, four years apart - as was Abraham Lincoln. Grandma named Link after him.

Diana Mcc. said...

Hi, Judith, Thanks for stopping by.

Waving back Paisley, sure miss all of you RWA sisters in Sacramento.

Thanks for stopping by, Robin.

Meggan, I love Halloween. Did your Aunts and Grandmother like having their birthdays on Halloween?

Hi, Sarah! I love finding out interesting facts about holidays. Thanks for stopping by.