Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Poisson d'avril

Happy April Fools Day. 

Oddly, I fell upon the history of this celebration and voila, it had its beginnings in France.  Who knew?  

The story of April Fools can be traced to the 16th century.  Back then New Year's was celebrated on April 1--according to the Julien calender.  Charles IX decreed that it should be celebrated on January 1, following the Gregorian calender.  As the change was announced mid-year, many individuals not wanting to acknowledge this change or not up to speed on the declaration (no Internet back then to disperse news) were referred to as fools and taunted.  In France, school aged children would tape cut out paper fish to friends backs and once discovered call out "poisson d'avril".  

Something poisson-y is going on...

Photo credit:  colombes philatelie

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