«La Semana del Inglés»: What Are We Celebrating this Week?
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You might be wondering (puede que te estés preguntando) why we are celebrating «La Semana del Inglés» this week (from April 23rd to April 29th). Well, first of all, we needed an excuse to celebrate this beautiful language of ours (nuestra). We simply love teaching English and want to share that love with you, our students.
There are many important key dates (fechas clave) for the English language that fall on (que caen en) «La Semana del Inglés». Keep on reading to find out more!
The International Day of the English Language, St. George and the Dragon
April 23rd, the beginning of «La Semana del Inglés», was established as the International Day of the English Language by the United Nations in 2010. That alone (solo eso ya) is a pretty good excuse to celebrate English… but, there’s more!
Together with Christmas, April 23rd is one of the most important days in the calendar for English people, a day of national pride (orgullo nacional). Why? Because it’s St. George’s Day, the Patron Saint (el santo patrón) of England. But, who was this St. George? Well, you might have heard about The Legend of St. George and the Dragon. In case you haven’t, this would be a good moment to read a little bit about it. There are many versions of the story, but it basically goes something like this:
Once upon a time, in a faraway land (en un reino muy lejano) –some say it was near Dragon Hill in Berkshire, England - there was an evil dragon that spent its days poisoning local fields (envenenando los campos). To keep the Dragon away from the city those fields surrounded (la ciudad a la que rodeaban esos campos), people began offering it two sheep a day. Sadly; that wasn’t enough for the Dragon, so they started offering their children. The victims of this sacrifice were selected by lot (por sorteo), until one day the lot fell on (le tocó a) the king’s daughter.
Despite the king’s efforts to save her, the princess was sent to the lake where the Dragon lived so he could eat her alive. Our hero, Saint George, couldn’t let that happen. When the Dragon emerged from the lake, Saint George made the sign of the cross (la señal de la cruz) and attacked the monster with his sword (espada), fatally wounding it (y lo hirió de muerte). From the Dragon’s blood, a red rose bloomed (brotó, floreció), and the knight (caballero) offered it to the princess.
The king offered Saint George gold and silver, but our hero asked for the riches (las riquezas) to be given to the people of the realm (el pueblo del reino).
A church was built to honor Saint George’s bravery and kindness (valentía y bondad).
King Edward III named him the Patron Saint of England in 1350, when he formed the Order of the Garter (la Orden de la Jarretera) in Saint George’s name.
In truth, it’s pretty unlikely that (en realidad, es poco probable que) Saint George ever set foot in (pusiera un pie en) England… but that’s no skin off our nose (nos da igual)– we think he’s cool! That’s why we’re using his beautiful story to launch (lanzar) «la Semana del Inglés»!
But there are many more interesting dates to commemorate during «La semana del inglés». The next one has to do with the greatest writer of English Literature of all time (de todos los tiempos).
Shakespeare’s Birthday and… Death?
William Shakespeare was born on April 26th, 1564 in Stratford-upon-Avon, so we’re celebrating his birthday next Thursday. Yay! Did you know he invented more than 1,700 words that today are part of the English language? Words like «generous», «fashionable», and even «bedroom».
In fact, you might have heard that Shakespeare and Cervantes died on the same day, on April 23rd, but actually… neither of them (ninguno de los dos) did! Seriously! Cervantes died on the 22nd and was buried (fue enterrado) on the 23rd, while Shakespeare died… on May 3rd! This common confusion is due to the fact that (se debe al hecho de que) at that time they used to use the Julian Calendar in England.
Another important English Language milestone (hito) falls on April 25th. That date, in 1719, saw the publication of the world-famous book Robinson Crusoe, by Daniel Defoe. It’s considered to be one of the most popular novels in English literature.
«La Semana del Inglés» at Vaughan
So are we at Vaughan cooking up (tramando, maquinando) to celebrate our favourite week of the year? Besides doing what we do every day – teaching the socks off you guys (enseñaros como si no hubiera un mañana) –, we’ve come up with a whole host of (se nos han ocurrido un montón de) surprises for you; surprises like:
- Great discounts (descuentos) on many of our English courses and books
- Daily raffles (sorteos) with great prizes!
- Free workshops (talleres) with your favourite teachers, which you can either attend in person or take part in via our social media (participar a través de nuestras redes sociales)!
Plus, a couple more truly massive surprises! Click here for more information on «La Semana del Inglés»!