What is the Luck of the Irish


Sierra Van Houten, Editor

We are now in the month of March. That means that Saint Patrick’s Day is coming up. There is also a very popular phrase that is said throughout the day, which is “luck of the Irish.” I’m sure at one point everyone has heard this phrase. However, do you know where the phrase originated from?

First, what does this phrase even mean? The phrase “luck of the Irish” was thought to mean good luck. However, the phrase isn’t even Irish. The phrase is actually American. The phrase comes from old miners. In the 19th century a lot of the most famous and successful miners were of Irish and Irish-American descent.

The American miners thought that the Irish miners were successful because of “luck” not their hard work. In the 1950’s places did not want the Irish to apply because they had the “luck.” The phrase is actually ironic because the Irish did not have much luck at all. Ireland went through a potato famine, which forced them to have to emigrate. Abroad the Irish were treated very badly and struggled to make a living. Some of the emigrants did not even make the trip across because of illness and many families lost their children.

People started to get the idea that the Irish were just born lucky. This is because the Irish continued to prosper while many others were struggling. This is because they were determined to work hard. This raises the question, does hard work equate to luck?

As Saint Patrick’s Day approaches here is a little bit of history to think about. A phrase that is so popular for this holiday has an alternative meaning. We here at The Clarion want to wish you a happy Saint Patrick’s Day and hope you all enjoy it safely.