The day of silliness and practical jokes is neigh. Family, friends, neighbours, co-workers, and even teachers try to get on to all the madness.
April 1st is celebrated as the day of fools or April Fools day – It is a day of merriment, pranks and laughter. How this tradition began though remains a mystery although there are many speculations.
It is believed that the first association between April 1 and playing tricks can be found in Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales from 1392. In the story “The Nun’s Priest’s Tale,” a fox tricks proud rooster Chauntecleer on syn March bigan thritty dayes and two.
Although Chaucer probably meant 32 days after March (May 2), many readers apparently misunderstood the line to mean March 32 — or April 1.
Some Oohers believe that April Fools’ Day was the result of a desire to celebrate the turning of the seasons around springtime. In fact, many cultures have historically held such celebrations around the beginning of April.
For example, the ancient Romans had a festival named Hilaria on March 25. The Hindu festival called Holi is held in March and celebrates the arrival of spring.
Still others believe April Fools’ Day got its start because of the adoption of a new calendar in 1582. Many ancient cultures celebrated New Year’s Day around April 1.
In 1582, Pope Gregory XIII ordered the use of a new calendar, known as the Gregorian calendar, which celebrated New Year’s Day on January 1. According to legend, many people refused to recognize the new calendar or simply didn’t know about it. These people continued to celebrate New Year’s Day on April 1.
Eventually, other people began to make fun of these “fools” by sending them to look for things that did not exist (called a “fool’s errand”) or tricking them into believing something false.
Although we can’t really pinpoint how or when April Fools’ Day got its start, people the world over still celebrate it with glee year in and year out. Pranks can be quite simple, such as telling a friend his shoe is untied, or very elaborate too!