How did become the first day of the 4th month, aka April 1, the day of trying to fool people or to play pranks on them. Since I come from a long line of pranksters and it appears it has transferred into the newest generations of the family, I always have a slight sense of paranoia on this day. They are all out to get me.
The origin of April Fools’ day seems to be a bit vague. Some say that it started in 1582, when France changed from the Julian calendar to the Gregorian calendar. The switch took place because France has decided to commence their New Year with the Spring Equinox, which takes place around April 1, not all of France’s citizens accepted this change and were therefore called April Fools.
Another theory is that April 1st became the fool’s holiday due to Geoffrey Chaucer’s 14th century collection, The Canterbury Tales, wherein Chaucer includes a playful reference to “32 March,” or April 1st. However, most scholars consider it to have been a mere copying error.
In my native ,the Netherlands, the origin of April Fools’ Day is often attributed to the Dutch victory in 1572 at Brielle, where the Spanish Duke Álvarez de Toledo was defeated.”Op 1 april verloor Alva zijn bril is a Dutch proverb, which can be translated as: “On the first of April, Alva lost his glasses.” In this case, “bril” (“glasses” in Dutch) serves as a homonym for Brielle. This theory, however, provides no explanation for the international celebration of April Fools’ Day.
Some even suggested that the tradition goes back to biblical times. Some scholars say it goes back as far as to the flood in Noah’s time as described in Genesis chapters 6–9.
The London Public Advertiser of March 13, 1769, printed: “The mistake of Noah sending the dove out of the ark before the water had abated, on the first day of April, and to perpetuate the memory of this deliverance it was thought proper, whoever forgot so remarkable a circumstance, to punish them by sending them upon some sleeveless errand similar to that ineffectual message upon which the bird was sent by the patriarch”
Over the centuries people have come up with some many different ways to fool their fellow men.
On April Fools’ Day 1957 by the BBC current-affairs program Panorama, purportedly showing a family in southern Switzerland harvesting spaghetti from the family “spaghetti tree”. At the time spaghetti was relatively unknown in the UK, so many British people were unaware that it is made from wheat flour and water; a number of viewers afterwards contacted the BBC for advice on growing their own spaghetti trees.
In 1962, Swedish national television broadcast a 5-minute special on how one could get color TV by placing a nylon stocking in front of the TV. A rather in-depth description on the physics behind the phenomenon was included. Thousands of people tried it.
In 2016, one of the biggest pornography sharing sites Pornhub changed its name to Cornhub and displayed suggestive videos featuring corn. The site used a similar prank for 2018’s April Fools Day – this time changing its name to Hornhub and displaying videos about women blowing horns instead of pornography.
I wish you all a good April Fools’ day and I hope that you will have lots of laughs.
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