April Fools’ Day
April is upon us! Were you swindled, hoodwinked, bamboozled? Perhaps you enjoyed duping your friends and co-workers. Whether you were the conned or the con-artist, have you ever wondered how April Fools Day started? Here’s a rundown for you.
The New Calendar
Before we were using the Gregorian Calendar (named after Pope Gregory XIII) we use today, we used the Julian Calendar. Can you guess who it was named after? Yes, after Julius Caesar. Anyway, the Gregorian New Year starts on January 1. But to those who refused to use the new calendar, their New Year started on April 1. People began making fun of these people and sending them on “fool’s errands,” which eventually spread in Europe.
The Vernal Equinox
According to history.com, April Fools’ Day is tied to the Vernal Equinox or the first day of Spring in the Northern Hemisphere. There are speculations that the first day of Spring was when Mother Nature tricked people with unpredictable weather patterns.
You’d think this holiday’s history goes way further. But actually, there is more recent April Fools’ Day hoodwinks that happened in the 20th century. Take for instance when Swiss farmers were reported to experience record spaghetti crop by the BBC in 1957. TV viewers believed the footage of people harvesting noodles from trees to be true. In 1985, Sports Illustrated duped many of their readers when it published a lampoon article about a pitcher who could throw a fastball over 160 miles per hour.
So, there you have it. These are some of the stories revolving around this fun holiday. Do you know of other reasons how April Fools’ Day came to be? Share it with us in the comments below!