April Fools’ Day: Date, History, Meaning and Celebration

April Fools’ Day: Date, History, Meaning and Celebration

The origins of April Fools’ Day, which is observed on April 1 every year, are unknown, but it has been observed for many centuries by numerous cultures.

On April 1st, it’s customary to play practical jokes or hoaxes on other people while yelling “April Fools!” at the end to reveal the target of the prank. Although its exact origins are unknown, the unofficial holiday has a long history thanks to the media and well-known companies’ acceptance of jokes on April 1st.

According to some historians, April Fools’ Day first appeared in France in 1582, the year that country switched from using the Julian to the Gregorian calendars, as the Council of Trent had mandated in 1563. The spring equinox, which occurred around April 1, marked the start of the new year in both the Julian and Hindu calendars.

People who celebrated the new year during the final week of March through April 1 were labeled “April fools” because they were slow to catch on to the change or didn’t understand that it had been moved to January 1. They were called “poisson d’avril” (April fish), which is said to represent a young, easily caught fish and a gullible person, and had paper fish placed on their backs.

Photo: Time and Date

The absolutely true and not pulling your leg response to the question of how April Fools’ Day came to be is: Nobody really knows. Whence proceeds the custom of making April Fools? is a question that is posed in the earliest recorded mentions of April Fools’ Day, like the excerpt below from a 1708 letter to Britain’s Apollo magazine. Celebrate the long-standing tradition of jokes with these easy-to-implement April Fools’ Day office pranks, according to RD.

READ MORE: April Fools’ Day: Funny Sms, Text Messages, Jokes

Today, it is still customary throughout the UK to yell “April Fool” at anyone who falls for a prank and becomes the “fool.” According to custom, pranks should end at noon, and anyone still pulling them after that time is regarded as the fool.

In Ireland, it used to be customary to entrust the April Fool with a “important letter” that needed to be delivered to a particular individual. Then the recipient would ask the “April Fool” to deliver it to someone else, and so on. The joke was finally revealed when the letter was opened and found to contain the words “send the fool further.”

In Scotland, April Fool’s Day is celebrated over two days. Called Taily Day, The second day is devoted to pranks involving the buttocks. The “kick me” sign can be traced back to Taily Day.

December 28th is the equivalent of April 1st in Mexico. The day began as a solemn commemoration of King Herod’s brutal killing of the defenseless children, but over time it changed into a humorous holiday filled with tricks and pranks.

The April fool is referred to as “poisson d’avril” in France (April fish). Although the exact meaning of the fish is unknown, it could be connected to the sun leaving Pieces (the fish) at the beginning of April. Unintentionally placing dead fish on friends’ backs was part of a French tradition. Nowadays, paper fish shapes rather than actual fish are used by kids to cover the backs of their friends’ shirts. Special fish-shaped candies are also sold in stores and bakeries.

The April Fools’ Day is observed differently in the Netherlands. The Netherlands were ruled by Spain in 1572. Rebel Dutchmen captured the town of Den Briel on April 1st, 1572. This signaled the beginning of the Dutch people’s general civil uprising against the Spanish.

The Duke of Alba was in charge of the Spanish army at the time, but he was unable to stop the uprising from gaining momentum. The phrase “Alba lost his glasses” comes from the Dutch word bril, which means glasses. On April 1st, the Dutch celebrate this with jokes and humor.

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