Saturday, April 01, 2006

April fools day!!!!!

April 1st – A day for fools.
The origins of April Fools’ Day are uncertain, but without doubt they are linked to a time when the year was deemed to begin in late March or early April. In many cultures, the New Year is a time for pranks and merriment.
Some historians find traces of our April fool tradition in Greek and Roman My theology. Demeter searching for her daughter Persephone, who had been carried off by Pluto, heard the girl’s scream echoeing through a valley. She followed the scream on what may be interpreted as a fool’s quest, but never found more than their echo. Anthropologists compare our custom to that of India’s Huli festival held on March 31st, in which it is traditional to trick people by sending them on useless quests.
Even though such customs go back to ancient times, our April Fools’ Day is probably of more recent origin. In 1564 the French decided that January 1 and not March 25th should start the year. Until that time it had been customary to give New Year gifts in late March, which often coincided with Easter’s Holy week. When the calendar changed, Church and government officials decided that April 1 should replace the old festival. A tradition grew of playing pranks on this day. One explanation for this is that calendar changes annoyed the French citizens, who decided to take it out on officials by sending them on false errands. Another is that April one became a day for visiting friends and possibly for taking small gifts, all with the intention of creating confusion about what was really New Year’s Day.
Whatever its origins the tradition of playing pranks on April 1st has spread to many countries and beyond the realm of children. Today many news papers and radio and TV stations join in the fun by staging elaborate and often highly amusing hoaxes.
Incidentally today happens to be my Birthday too............

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Many MOre Happy Returns of the Day Mom. I love U.