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ΑρχικήEnglish EditionApril Fool’s Day 2023: Learn about the History and Origin of the...

April Fool’s Day 2023: Learn about the History and Origin of the Day!


By Maria Papagiannopoulou, 

This day has been observed for centuries but its true origin is unknown. April Fool’s Day, also known as Fool’s Day, is celebrated on April 1st in several countries. It is celebrated on Friday, April 1, 2022.

It is one of the brightest days of the year and is celebrated by playing practical jokes and spreading hoaxes. The joke and its victims are called “April Fool’s jokes”.

Some historians say it was first celebrated in 1852 when France switched from the Julian calendar to the Gregorian calendar and some say it is related to the change of seasons. According to the most widely believed belief, the ancient Romans began New Year celebrations in April, while in medieval Europe March 25th was New Year celebrations. In 1852, Pope Gregory VIII introduced the Gregorian calendar (the modern calendar). Based on this, the new year begins in January.

The calendar was first accepted in France but according to Janushruti, some people in Europe did not accept it or recognize it. As a result, people who celebrated the new year in April of the lunar calendar made fun of those who celebrated the new year according to the new calendar and the trend toward April Fool’s Day and Fool’s Day increased.

Image source: samoaglobalnews.com

Stories about April Fool’s Day

  1. Once upon a time, in Greece, there was a funny king named “Moxar”. One day he had a dream that ants swallowed him alive. In the morning, when his sleep was broken, he started laughing out loud and remembering his dream. When his wife asked why he was laughing, he said, “One night she saw an ant swallow me alive in a dream.” Hearing that, the Queen also laughed. Then the astrologer told the king that this dream meant, “You should live with the day of laughing and joking,” and that today was April 1st. Since then, April 1st has been celebrated as Laughter Day every year.
  2. According to another folktale, an Apsara befriended a farmer and said, “If you drink a jar of water in one breath, I will bless you.” He exhaled and asked the Apsara for his blessing. She said:

“You are so innocent. From today onwards, I bless you for making people laugh with your clever words.” From that time on, the peasants began to make people laugh, which led to a laughter festival called Fool’s Day was born.

  1. Once upon a time, there was a king in Spain called “Mount Bell”. One day he announced a contest and told people that whoever wrote a true lie would be rewarded. Thousands of letters containing “true lies” were sent to the king on the day of the competition but the king was not satisfied with the letters. Finally, a girl came and said, “Maharajah, I am stupid and blind.” Hearing this, the King was confused and asked:

“What is the proof that you are really blind?” She said, “I can see the trees planted in front of the palace, but I cannot see them.” The king laughed about it. He gave the girl a prize for a joke gone wrong and announced to the people that from now on he would celebrate Fool’s Day every April 1st. Since then, this tradition began.

  1. Four friends lived in the city of Athens BC. One of them considered herself very smart and enjoyed humiliating others. So, three of his other friends sat down, came up with a trick, and told him they had a peculiar dream last night. In a dream, I saw a goddess standing before us. He said that tomorrow night the light of God will appear at the top of the hill and give him the desired blessing, so he must come there with his friends. A friend who thought himself smart believed in the dreams of other friends hid to see the stupidity of his intelligent friend. Slowly, the multitude began to grow and the moon and the stars began to shine in the sky, but there was no divine light to behold, and no name was given. Since then, every year in Athens the act of cheating began. After that, other countries gradually adopted it and on April 1st, they started tricking their acquaintances. This is how April Fool’s joke was born.

Events on April Fool’s Day

Image source: globallingua.ca
  1. French “April Fool’s Day” has an exciting program of clowns, poets, and satirists. This program runs for 7 consecutive days. Young people who participate in this fun event must wear girls’ dresses and those who cheat will be rewarded.
  2. In China and France, it is a tradition to send colorful parcels and hand out sweets to celebrate “April Fool’s Day”. Children often laugh that day. People wear wildlife masks to intimidate visitors.
  3. “April Fool’s Day” event in Rome lasts for 7 days and is tricked like China by sending colored parcels.
  4. Japan’s “April Fool’s Day” has children writing a declaration and flying a kite, and the person looking for a kite becomes “April Fool’s Day”.
  5. In honor of April Fool’s Day, the UK hosts a variety of interesting programs. In this show, people are fooled by singing silly songs.
  6. In Scotland, “April Fool’s Day” is known as “Hunting the Cool”. On this day, the “tail claw” has a special tradition. That does not bother chicken owners either. Apart from that, people find new ways to cheat each other.

References
  • April Fool’s Day. history.com. Available here
  • April Fool’s Day. britannica.com. Available here 

 

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Maria Papagiannopoulou
Maria Papagiannopoulou
She was born in 1999. She holds a Bachelor's degree in English Language and Teaching with the University of Greenwich, UK. She also holds a Master's degree in TESOL with the University of Sunderland, UK. In her leisure time, she practices her artistic nature in photography. She also enjoys travelling.