Orangemen’s Day: Six Things About Holiday You Must Know

Some people in Newfoundland and Labrador had a day off work on Monday, including employees with the provincial government.


Orangemen’s Day itself is actually today, July 12, but the holiday is marked locally on the Monday closest to the date.

It’s a provincial holiday but not a statutory one.

What makes it so special in 2017 that some people in the province get a day off work while others don’t? Hard to say, but here are six things you may or may not have known about the occasion as per timeanddate.com:

1. Orangemen’s Day commemorates the Battle of the Boyne, which took place in 1690 outside Drogheda, which today is located in the Republic of Ireland. Prince William of Orange won the battle against King James VII of Scotland and James II of England and Ireland. He became King William III.

2. For the most part, it is celebrated by people with a Protestant Irish or Scottish background.

3. The Battle of the Boyne has been seen as symbolic of the sectarian struggles between Catholics and Protestants in Ireland.

4. Orangemen’s parades were commonplace in many Newfoundland communities by the end of the 19th century.

5. In the United Kingdom it is also known as “Orange Day,” “the Glorious Twelfth” or simply “the Twelfth.”

6. In some fishing communities in Newfoundland celebrations would traditionally be held in the winter so fishermen would not lose days at sea during the cod fishing season.

When is Orangeman’s Day?

Orangeman’s Day is a provincial government holiday in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada.

It is observed on the Monday closest to July 12th.

Orangemen’s Day, also known as Orange Day, is celebrated on July 12th. Is a provincial holiday in Newfoundland and Labrador on the Monday closest to July 12.

Orangemen’s Day commemorates the 1690 Protestant victory over Roman Catholic forces in the Battle of the Boyne in Ireland. King William III of Orange, the Protestant King of England, defeated former King James II, a Catholic.

The Orange Order was established a century after the Battle of the Boyne and steadily grew in the 19th century as a patriotic bulwark against what many Protestants saw as treasonous Catholicism. By the end of the 19th century Orangemen’s parades were commonplace in many Newfoundland communities.

In some Newfoundland and Labrador communities, Orangemen’s Day celebrations are rescheduled in the winter season so that fishermen on the northeast coast do not lose money during the lucrative cod fishing season.

History of Orangeman’s Day

Orangeman’s Day commemorates the Battle of the Boyne, fought in Ireland on July 1st 1690 by King William of Orange against King James II. The battle predates the switch to the Gregorian calendar in 1752, which is why it is now celebrated on July 12th.

Before the battle even began, with the forces lined up on opposite banks of the Boyne, an early cannonball strike from James’ artillery hit William on the shoulder. A few inches either way and the whole history of Ireland may have been changed. As it was, the injury wasn’t serious enough to stop William commanding his troops and winning the day.

The victory of William and his Orangemen was seen as a key moment in the ‘Glorious Revolution’ when the Protestant (but not very English) William overthrew the Catholic James with the support of the English Parliamentarians.

The Canadian tradition of Orangeman’s Day

From the start of the nineteenth century, there was significant immigration from Ireland to Canada. Until the Irish famine in 1840, the majority of the immigrants were Irish Protestants. This meant that Irish Protestant traditions such as marching to commemorate the Battle of the Boyne and the establishment of the Orange Order (an organisation that promotes Protestant values) became commonplace in many parts of Canada.

While parades in large cities like Toronto are not as popular as in the past, Newfoundland and Labrador still observes Orangeman’s Day as part of this legacy.

Newfoundland and Labrador Customs

All customs change. Some of the modern customary practices of Newfoundland and Labrador are of great antiquity while others are fairly recent in origin. Traditional customs of our communities reflect the past, but they also respond to the present. No folklore ever survives a new generation unless someone in the new generation finds it relevant to his/her life. What may be a religious practice for one generation may be entertainment for the next, a fund-raiser for another, an educational event for someone else, and so on. That customs change relevance and evolve is as true today as in every other period in our history. After many generations, a custom may reflect the different eras, each in small ways.

When people think of customs in this province, the first that springs to mind is Christmas mummering. It has received a lot of attention in the past thirty years and although it was in decline in the middle part of this century, it received a boost in popularity in the 1980s and ’90s. Mummering is an example of what folklorists call calendar customs, practices tied to certain dates or seasons. Calendar customs contrast with life cycle customs, also known as rites of passage. Life cycle customs often vary a great deal from one ethnic or religious group to another even within the same geographic area.


Today we bring you a little bit of History from a very famous place: The United Kingdom.

Every year on July 12th, they celebrate what they call Orangemen’s Day and today we will tell you what are they conmemoratening and how.

But first, here is your idiomatic Expression of the week and your phrasal verbs.

Learn about this amazing country an enjoy!

Idiomatic Expression of the week: To Jump on the bandwagon

Definition: >To Turn Up:

Definition: To make an appearence, to arrive.

Example: A lot of people turned up at the party.


People in Northern Ireland have a bank holiday on or after Jly 12 to conmemorate the Battle of Boyne, which accured on Ireland’s east coast in 1690. It’s also as Orangemen’s Day, Orange Day, The Glorious Twelfth

What do people do?

In many towns in Northern Ireland marches or walks are held by organizations with a Protestant orientation. The marching season lasts from April until August but the Glorious Twelfth (of July), or Orangemen’s Day, is particularly important. Many marchez are organized and are accompanied by a marching band.

Participants in the walks or marches, often waer dar suits, although they may remove thair jackets if it is hot. Traditionaly, they also wore black bowler hats and white gloves, although these are not as common now. The participants also wear collarettes. This type of collarette is made from a long thin piece of cloth, which is draped around the neck of the wearer and joined to form a V chape at the front. Many collarettes are made from orange cloth, although there may be other colors. The collarettes bear the number of the lodge that the wearer belongs to and a range of badges showing the person’s positions in or degrees from the lodge.

Many lodeges carry at least one flag during the marches. This is normally the Union Flag, sometimes known as the Union Jack, although some carry Scottish Ulster or Orange Order flags. Many lodges also carry one or more banners. These display the name and number of the lodge on one side. The other side displays images of William of Orange, deceased lodge members, local landmarks or the bible with a crown.

About The Battle of The Boyne

The Battle of the Boyne was held on July 1, 1690 on the banks of the Boyne River near the town of Dorgheda in the East coast of Ireland. It was a battle between King James VII of Scotland and James II of England and Ireland and his supporters on one side and Prince William of Orange won the battle and became King William III.

The Battle of the Boyne has been seen as symbolic of the sectarian struggles between Catholics and Protestants in Ireland. King James was seen as representing Catholics and Prince William was seen to represent the Protestants. This gave the Battle of the Boyne an important symbolic role in Irish politics and life. However, modern analysis of documents from the time suggest that Catholics and Protestants fought on both sides.

Althoguh the Battle of the Boyne is now commemorated on July 12, it was held on July 1, 1690. The shift in the date is due to the changeover from the Julian calendar to the Gregorian calendar. In Ireland, The Gregorian calendar was adopted in 1572 and September 14 followed September 2. Many dates in the calendar were mapped into the new calendar without a correction. However, the Orange orders were suspicious of the Greogorian calendar and its papist connections and continued to march on the corrected date of July 12.

Orangemen’s Day is aldo celebrated in some areas of the USA and Canada. In Canadian provinces of Newfoundland and Labrador, Orangemen’s Day is usually celebrated on the Monday closest to July 12. In some fishing communities the celebrations are held in the winter so fishermen do not lose valuable days at sea during the cod fishing season.

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