Legend has it that a long time ago, in Montblanc (Tarragona) a dragon capable of poisoning the air and killing with its breath, had terrified the inhabitants of the city. They decided to calm it by feeding it one person a day to be chosen at random.
After some time a curse fell upon the Princess of Montblanc. She left her home to seek out the dragon and end the curse but was attacked by the beast. Then a knight by the name of Jordi, in his shining armor and a white horse, suddenly appeared to come to her rescue. Sant Jordi raised his sword and pierced the dragon, finally freeing the princess and the citizens. From the dragon’s blood sprouted a rose bush with the reddest roses that had ever been seen. Sant Jordi, triumphant, plucked a rose and offered it to the princess.
During this festivity, giving roses to loved ones is the most significant tradition. Anyone can make this offering, although as tradition dictates, it is the man who must deliver a rose to his beloved. It is considered to be Catalan Valentine’s Day. It is also International Book Day, so purchasing books is also common on Sant Jordi. Gaudí’s spectacular Casa Batlló famously depicts this legend on it’s façade.