April Fools Day is known for the many pranks, tricks and jokes bringing laughter and fun, most the time, on family and friends. It’s a day the pranksters in our life pull tricks from their sleeves to see who they can prank but where and how did April Fools come to exist? As with all traditional holidays there’s a historical story and April Fools Day isn’t any different.
Pope Gregory of France adopted the Georgian Calendar establishing the beginning of each year to begin on the first day of January. Prior to adopting the newest calendar change the first day of April was recognized as the beginning of each New Year. Change, as we all know, can be a difficult adjustment. Many continued to believe the New Year began on the first day of April and were considered “fools” causing many belly laughs. The day became known as “Fools Day”.
“The term “All Fools,” was probably meant as a deliberate stab at All Saints (November 1) and All Souls (November 2) Day. Although the origin of playing practical jokes and pranks on this day is hazy, many folklorists believe it may go back to 16th-century France. At that time, New Year’s Day was March 25, with a full week of partying and exchanging gifts until April 1. In 1582, the Gregorian calendar moved New Year’s Day to January 1. Those who forgot or refused to honor the new calendar were teasingly called, “April Fool!” -Farmers Almanac http://www.almanac.com/fact/april-fools-day-the-term-all-fools-holiday
Continuing the tradition Fools Day evolved into April Fools Day, the one day each year known for making ‘fools’ of friends, family even co-workers. Today April Fools Day pranks, according to The United States Farmers Almanac, are pulled through social media outlets than within American homes or in person.
As a child my mom always got me first thing in the morning before I was awake enough to realize it was April Fools Day. She’d tell me it was snowing, which isn’t completely unusual in Tennessee, or there were deer in the field just beyond our back porch. Either way I’d run to the window to see only to hear her laugh as she proclaimed “April Fools”!
Today these silly pranks are fond memories. I’ve carried forth the family tradition by pulling a prank or two on my family each year by switching bags of cereal into different cereal boxes, placing a cup on the table with a warning not to move it unless willing to kill what’s under it, which of course wasn’t anything and other silly pranks. We’ve made memories and I’m certain they’ll get me back…one of these days!
How will you celebrate April Fools Day? What pranks have you pulled off successfully? Share your ideas and photos with Cheatham News! After all laughter, they say, is medicine for the soul, so share the fun and laughs with your Cheatham News family and friends!
Oh…April Fools Day is on April 1st…April Fools! I know it was cheesy but if you made to the end of this article I did get your attention!