National Patrick Day is observed on November 28 each year. Today, we acknowledge one of the world’s most popular first names and all of its namesakes in all walks of life. Patrick is a shortened Anglicized version of the Gaelic name ‘Mac Phadraig,’ meaning ‘son of Patrick,’ a personal name coined from Latin ‘Patricius’ ‘son of a noble father,’ or ‘member of the patrician class.’ The origins of Patrick clearly show that it’s a name rooted in royalty and wealth, associated with influence, and evokes grace and nobility. Patrick is widely adopted as a first name in the U.S., England, Wales, and Ireland — especially popular in the world of sport, entertainment and arts. Common variations and forms of the name include Pat, Paddy, Patricio, and Patrik.
History of National Patrick Day
Like many known names today, Patrick is a male name of Latin origin. The old Roman society was divided into two major social classes: plebeians (commoners) and patricians (aristocrats). Hence, Patrick is believed to be a common Anglicized form of the Celtic names ‘Padraig’ and Gaelic ‘Mac Phadraig,’ meaning ‘son of Patrick’. It is a personal name derived from its earliest Latin root name ‘Patricius’ ‘son of a noble father’ or ‘member of the patrician (noble) class.’ This was the name of the fifth-century Romano-Briton apostle and patron saint of Ireland — St. Patrick — who’s famously revered for introducing Christianity to the country.
The personal name was quite popular during the Middle Ages, mainly due to St. Patrick’s fame and influence. However, Patrick was not a popular baby boy’s name in the U.S. As of 1919, according to the U.S. Social Security Administration (S.S.A.) data for that year, only about 820 babies bore the same first name. Meanwhile, between 1880 and 2018, the name ‘Patrick’ was recorded 677,408 times in the S.S.A. public database.
You’ll find Patricks excelling in various career fields — most notably, arts, sports, politics, athletics, and literature. Some of the famous namesakes include the late American comedian and satirist Pat Paulsen; English stand-up comedian Pat Condell; American actors Patrick Dempsey, Patrick Duffy, and Patrick Swayze (1952 to 2009); Irish actors Patrick Magee and Patrick McDonnell; and English actors Patrick Macnee, Patrick Troughton (1920 to 1987). Other notable figures include Pat Chapman, an English food writer; American singer Pat Boone; Patrick Monahan, American musician of the rock band Train; British rapper Patrick Chukwuemeka “Tinie Tempah” Okogwu; Irish politicians Patrick Byrne, Patrick Connor, and Patrick Duffy; American basketball player Patrick Ewing; Dutch football player Patrick Kluivert; and Patrick Mboma, an ex-Cameroonian footballer.
National Patrick Day timeline
Patrick first appears in the U.S. and is given to 248 newborn babies.
“People Magazine” names actor Patrick Wayne Swayze the “Sexiest Man Alive.”
Patrick Ewing is inducted into the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame as a member of the “Dream Team.”
Patrick Mahomes becomes the second African American quarterback to win the Super Bowl M.V.P.
National Patrick Day FAQs
What is the spiritual meaning of the name Patrick?
St. Patrick was a priest and is known as the patron saint of Ireland. Meaning “of noble origin,” the name is also associated with the figure six. Those with the number six are mature, smart, and sensible.
Is Patrick a good name?
Patrick is a male name of Latin origin meaning ‘nobleman.’ Patrick is a classic name associated with nobility and wealth — an excellent choice for your newborn.
What is the personality of the name Patrick?
Patrick is a name associated with a steady and balanced personality. Patricks are also believed to be very creative, athletic, artistically oriented, and goal-driven.
National Patrick Day Activities
Send a gift
What better way to tell your buddy Patrick he’s special than sending him his favorite items as gifts? If you can, have others write short notes to tell him how amazing he is and how proud you all are of him!
Throw a party
If you’re down for it, you can throw a simple Patrick Appreciation Party for the special Patrick you know. Of course, it doesn’t have to be loud or big, just a gathering of well-wishers and happy friends will do!
Pay a visit
There’s no better way to show your Uncle or Grandpa Patrick some love on this day than showing up for them today, bearing good wishes and thoughtful gifts. He’ll surely appreciate it, especially if you haven’t seen each other in a long while!
5 Amazing Facts About St. Patrick
He was born in Britain
Born in Britain, it’s believed that his birth name was Maewyn Succat in the late fourth century A.D.
He arrived in Ireland as a slave
Aged 16, Patrick was seized from his family’s home by a group of Irish pirates, who took him to Ireland, where he was enslaved for six years.
He traveled across Europe to study Christianity
St. Patrick traveled to France — visiting Auxerre, Tours, and the abbey at Lérins — to study Christianity for about 15 years.
St. Patrick’s Day parades originated in America
Records show that a St. Patrick’s Day parade was held on March 17, 1601, in a Spanish colony in what is now St. Augustine, Florida.
He didn’t banish snakes from Ireland
Although a popular myth, Ireland probably didn’t actually have any snakes.
Why We Love National Patrick Day
It’s a day of appreciation
Every cool person deserves to be appreciated — and Patricks are cool guys! We love that we can all gather around today and say sweet things about our dear friends so they know we love having them in our lives.
It rewards amazing-ness
If there’s one thing all Patricks share in common, it’s their exceptional talents, knack, and insight. They thrive in every industry they’re found in because of their penchant for excellence. This is a day to acknowledge those wonderful souls!
It’s a day for sharing love and gifts
Yes, we may not always agree with our own Patrick because they can be pesky sometimes. But today’s one day to put our differences aside and bring them gifts wrapped in love and sweetness.
National Patrick Day dates