Sunday, December 29, 2013

Just for Fun . . . New Year's Fun Facts!

New Year's Day is just around the corner, so I thought it would be fun to look on-line and see if I could find any interesting, surprising and fun New Year's facts to share with you . . . look what I found . . . 
  • New Year is the oldest of all holidays, as it was first observed in ancient Babylon as many as 4000 years ago.
  • Celebrating New Year on January 1 is purely arbitrary, as it does not have either agricultural nor astronomical significance. Many countries still celebrate it in spring, the season of rebirth of new crops.
  • The Roman senate declared January 1 as the New Year in 153 BC. Though even this date saw major tampering; it was Julius Caesar who again declared January 1 in Julian calendar as the New Year, in 46 BC.
  • The first month of the year i.e. January has been named after the god, Janus (Latin word for door), in the Roman calendar. Janus is the god with two faces, one looking backwards and one forward, at the same time and marks the ‘spirit of the opening’
  • New Year is celebrated like a festival throughout the world and everyone around is in a festive mood, partying, singing and dancing to ring out the old year and ring in the new.
  • In Britain, when the Big Ben clocks strikes 12, everyone gathers around to sing ‘Auld Lang Syne’, a Scottish song written by Robert Burns in the 1700's, literally meaning "old long ago," or simply, "the good old days", to remember old and new friends.
  • It was once believed the first visitor on New Year's Day would bring either good luck or bad luck for the rest of the year, depending on who he/she was.
  • Many parts of the U.S. celebrate New Year by consuming black-eyed peas and other legumes, as it has been considered good luck in many cultures.
  • The tradition of making New Year resolution dates back to the early Babylonians.
  • Traditionally, it was thought that people could alter the luck they would have throughout the coming year by what they did or ate on the first day of the year. It has, therefore, become important to celebrate the first day of the New Year in the company of family and friends.
  • The Spanish ritual on New Year's eve is to eat twelve grapes at midnight. The tradition is meant to secure twelve happy months in the coming year.
  • Noisemaking and fireworks on New Year's Eve is believed to have originated in ancient times, when noise and fire were thought to dispel evil spirits and bring good luck.
  • The first New Year’s Eve ball was dropped in Times Square in 1907. In response to a ban on fireworks implemented that year, an electrician built the ball as an alternative way to celebrate New Year’s Eve. He constructed a wood and iron ball that weighed 700 pounds and featured 100 light bulbs. The luminous orb was dropped from a flagpole at midnight on New Year’s Eve.
  • Lasagna is served on New Year’s Day, because any other noodle served is said to bring bad luck.
So . . . what do you think? Which of these do you find the most interesting? I thought the one about eating the twelve grapes was interesting and the one about lasagna was the most surprising and fun! 

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