Mother’s Day is a worldwide holiday that allows children to show their mothers just how much they love and appreciate them. While you may think that Mother’s Day is fairly simple, you may be surprised that the holiday has long and somewhat complex history. Coupled along with some fascinating facts, Mother’s Day is worth learning about. Here are some facts about Mother’s Day-
- Most countries have a special day to honor mothers. While many countries celebrate on the second Sunday in May, others choose a fixed date like May 10th, while still other countries have dates of celebration that run throughout the year.
- The process of getting Mother’s Day recognized as a holiday was not easy or quick. In 1914, the United States only proclaimed Mother’s Day a holiday after more than a century of women working together to promote the idea.
- In 1917, the trilingual Swiss began celebrating Mutter tag, La Festa della Mamma or Fête des Mères, (Mother’s Day).Switzerland was one of the first European countries to adopt the celebration, while some people speculate that the chocolate industry may have pushed for this holiday, knowing that it would boost business, no one will ever know, for sure. In Switzerland along with many other countries, including the United States, Mother’s Day is always the second Sunday in May.
- Sometimes Mother’s Day is confused with the English holiday known as Mothering Sunday. Traditionally, this holiday falls on the fourth Sunday in Lent. Today, Mother’s Day is now observed in England as well, and the traditions that were associated with Mothering Sunday have been largely replaced by modern Mother’s Day celebrations.
- Mother’s Day is always celebrated on May 10 in Mexico and South America. Statistics show that Mother’s Day is the largest card-sending occasion for Hispanics beating out both Christmas and Valentine’s Day!
- One of the most interesting holidays is found in Ethiopia. There is no fixed date for Mother’s Day (known as Antrosht), in Ethiopia because it occurs whenever the rainy season ends (October-November). Children (whatever their age) return home at this time. Boys and girls come from all over to visit their parents, bringing the necessary ingredients for a meat hash, which their mothers prepare. An interesting part of the holiday is when both mothers and girls anoint themselves with butter. At this time songs celebrating family and tribal heroes are sung. The entire festival lasts two to three days.
- Mother’s Day makes up a part of the celebration in Yugoslavia. This holiday is part of a three-day celebration. The first part is known as Children’s Day in Yugoslavia and occurs about three weeks before Christmas. On a Sunday in early December known as Dechiyi Dan or Children’s Day, parents in Yugoslavia tie up their children and refuse to release them until they are good. On the following Sunday, known as “Materitse,” “Materice,” or Mother’s Day, the children tie up their mother, releasing her only when she has paid them with sweets or other goodies. On the third Sunday known as “Ochichi,” “Ocevi,” or Father’s Day, the children try to tie their father to a bed or chair. To be released, the father must promise coats, shoes or other more expensive items. These promises usually appear a short time later as Christmas gifts.
- While the majority of countries around the world celebrate Mother’s Day on May 10th or the second Sunday in May, there are a number of other dates that are used for Mother’s Day. These are:
- Argentina-Celebrates the second Sunday in October
- England-Celebrates the last Sunday in Lent
- Ethiopia –Celebrates at the end of the rainy season
- France-Celebrates the last Sunday in May
- Lebanon-Celebrates on the first day of spring
- Norway –Celebrates the second Sunday in February
- South Africa-Celebrates the first Sunday in May
- Spain and Portugal-December 8, this is also known as the Virgin Mary’s Day as well as a day to honor mothers
- Sweden-Celebrates the last Sunday in May
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