Today, four-leaf clovers are associated with St. Patrick's Day, but they appear in centuries-old legends as symbols of good luck. The Druids (Celtic priests), in the early days of Ireland, believed that when they carried a three-leaf clover or shamrock, they could see evil spirits coming and have a chance to escape in time. Four-leaf clovers were Celtic charms, presumed to offer magical protection and ward off bad luck. Children in the Middle Ages believed if they carried a four-leaf clover, they would be able to see fairies, and the first literary reference to suggest their good fortune was made in 1620 by Sir John Melton.Fast Facts About Four-Leaf Clovers
- There are approximately 10,000 three-leaf clovers for every "lucky" four-leaf clover.
- There are no clover plants that naturally produce four leaves, which is why four-leaf clovers are so rare.
- The leaves of four-leaf clovers are said to stand for faith, hope, love, and luck.
- It's often said that Ireland is home to more four-leaf clovers than any other place, giving meaning to the phrase "the luck of the Irish."