Why do we call 1st April a fools’ day?

There are certain customs and practices that have been followed by people for centuries, all over the world. The reasons for their origin are not known with certainty. 1st April is one such day. It is considered the Fools’ Day in nearly all parts of the world. On this day, people play practical jokes on friends and neighbours by sending them mock gifts and inviting them to fake parties. The practice of playing tricks on friends and neighbours on 1st April is believed to have started in France after the year 1564. Before that one common calendar was used throughout Europe. According to this calendar, each New Year began on 1st April. People celebrated this day as ‘New Year’s Day’ by exchanging gifts and visiting each other. In 1564, however, Charles IX, the King of France, ordered people to adopt a new reformed calendar. According to this calendar the year began on 1st January. Most people followed the king’s orders. However, there were some who did not like the idea of a change and refused to celebrate New Year’s Day on 1st January. These people soon became the butt of jokes and tricks by their friends and neighbours because they continued to observe 1st April as New Year’s Day. Their friends and neighbours sent mock gifts, invited them to fake parties and played tricks on them because they were considered fools who clung on to a discarded New Year’s Day. Since then 1st April became the Fools’ Day.

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