Fighting fiery dragons!

Did you know that today, the 23 April is St. George’s Day?

Saint George is the patron saint of England and he is famous for slaying a fierce dragon and rescuing a beautiful princess. His symbol, a red cross on a white background, is the official flag of England. Saint George represents honour , bravery and truth and he is said to protect England in times of trouble. The story of St. George and the dragon has been told in England since the sixth century and it is thought to date back to the time of the crusades .

 

The story of St. George and the dragon

English flagSt. George, the knight , had been travelling for many months. Eventually he reached a beautiful land but the poeple were in great distress because a dragon was terrorising the whole country. St. George spoke with an old man:

“Every day” said the old man “the dragon demands the sacrifice of a beautiful maiden and now all the young girls have been killed. The king’s daughter is the only one left. Unless we can find a knight who can slay the dragon she too will be killed tomorrow.”

 

St.George by Bernat Martorell 1435When St. George heard this story he was determined to save the princess. So immediately he went to the valley where the dragon lived. When he arrived there he saw a group of women. They were weeping , amongst them was the beautiful princess Sabra dressed in pure Arabian silk. The knight spurred on his horse and galloped towards the dragon’s cave.

The dragon saw him and rushed out roaring with a sound louder than thunder. It was breathing fire, its head was huge and its tail fifty feet long. But St. George was not afraid. He struck the monster with his lance hoping to wound it.

The dragon‘s scales were so hard that the lance broke into a thousand pieces and St. George fell from his horse. Luckily he rolled under an enchanted orange tree which protected him from the dragon. Within a few minutes he had recovered his strength and was able to fight again.

He stabbed the beast with his sword, but the dragon spät poison on him and his armour broke in two. Once more he hid under the magic orange tree and then, with his sword in his hand, he rushed at the dragon and pierced it under the wing where there were no scales . It fell dead at his feet. Saint George took princess Sabra in his arms and rode victoriously back to the king.

 

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