April 23 – Sant Jordi day of books and roses

International Book Day


Tomorrow, April 23, International Book Day is celebrated, but in Catalonia (Spain) there is also a centuries-old tradition of giving Books and Roses as presents.

The tradition of giving books dates back to 1929, the year in which the Universal Exhibition was held in Barcelona, capital of Catalonia; Initially, the day chosen to promote the sale of books was October 7, but with the intention of making it a more participatory day, it was moved to April 23, taking advantage of the fact that that day coincided with the death of two illustrious writers (Miguel de Cervantes and William Shakespeare).

The custom of giving roses is even more centuries-old, it is believed that it began in the fifteenth century, when a Rose Fair began to be held in Barcelona.

These two traditions came together over time, and without being a public holiday in Catalonia, in all cities and towns, a magical atmosphere is created. In its streets there are stalls selling books and roses, which people buy and give to their loved ones.

From IM3, we wish that tomorrow our colleagues from Catalonia spend a Happy Sant Jordi (Saint George) Day and a Happy Name’s Day to all the Jordi, Jorge, Gorka, Jordina, and Georginas.