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History Of April Fool's Day.

Monday marks the April Fool's Day 6 a time to use the most mischievous part of one's brain and come up with ways to prank one's near and dear ones.

Although no one knows the exact origin of the April Fool's Day, it is believed that the occasion came into being in the 16th century when the Europeans stopped following the Julian calendar and instead began using the Gregorian calendar. The significant change the new calendar brought with it was a shift in the date for celebrating the New Year's Day from March 25 to Jan. 1 6 which continues to this day.

Historians believe that some traditionalists found it difficult to adjust to the new calendar and continued to celebrate New Year's Day in springtime, inviting ridicule from others. As a result, people following the Gregorian calendar started pranking those who were not, by telling them stories that were not true or sending them on "fool's errands." Over the years, the tradition is believed to have given rise to the modern practice of telling jokes and tricking people on April 1, ( Heavy reported . 

Here are some other historical facts regarding the day:

1. In the ancient times, Romans used to dress up in costumes during the celebration of a festival called "Hilaria," observed twice a year - March 25, and Nov. 3. The festival that continues for days was to mark the resurrection of Roman cult figures Osiris and Attis. With the rules of the society relaxed, Romans would masquerade, make fun of those in power, played games and watched spectacles. Parades would also be held, headed by the statue of goddess Cybele. Since Hilaria celebrations that started in March rolled over to the beginning of April, it is often considered to have been the predecessor of the present April Fool's Day. 

2. In the 1700s, Scotland had its own version of April Fool's Day that stretched over two days. The first day was known as "hunting the gowk," and the second day was called "Tailie Day," or "Preen-Tail Day." On the first day, pranksters would send people on pointless, long errands with meaningless messages such, "Dinna laugh, dinna smile. Hunt the gowk [cuckoo] another mile." On the next day, gullible people were targeted and paper tails were attached to their backs so that they become an object of ridicule.

3. April Fool's Day is known as "Poisson d'Avril" in France. During this time, children in the country try to fool their friends by taping a paper fish to their backs. When the targeted fellow discovers what had happened, the prankster takes the opportunity to yell "Poisson d'Avril," ( CNN reported . 

4. According to a recent ( survey conducted by National Today , 38 percent of Americans dislike April Fool's Day - compared to just 44 percent who approved of the atmosphere of fun and mischief it evoked. Among those who approved of the day, 64 percent said they planned to prank someone or the other. Twenty percent of them planned on pranking their spouses, while another 20 percent wanted to prank a friend.

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Publication:International Business Times - US ed.
Date:Apr 1, 2019
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