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EXPLAINER: How did April Fools’ Day start

(EDITOR’S NOTE: This article was originally published on April 1, 2019.)

CEBU CITY, Philippines — It’s one of the most light-hearted day of the year as people play jokes, tricks and pranks on the 1st day of April. 

Social media is now filled with jokes and pranks like sending someone on  false errands or sending someone false information in order to make fun of them. 

Amid all these, one can sometimes wonder how this day of having to play a prank on someone started.

What is April Fools’ Day?

Many theories, however, try to explain the origin of April Fools’ Day.

There are those who believe that it stems from the change of calendar way back in 1582 when Pope Gregory XIII ordered to replace the Julian Calendar to the Gregorian Calendar.

Many people refused to adopt the new calendar and continued to celebrate New Year’s Day on April 1 instead of January 1.

READ MORE: April Fools’ Day etiquette: These are the pranks you should avoid

Some say that was how April Fools’ Day began — the day of sending someone on false errands or do tricks on each other to make one believe things that are not true.

Another theory traces the origin of April Fools’ Day to the time of Noah, who was said to have mistakenly sent a dove out to find dry land after the flood subsided on April 1.

Some, however,  believe that it is a waste of time and describe it as manipulative, rude and dangerous, sometimes.

Another way of looking at it is that belly laughs caused by April Fools pranks are good for the health. Having a good laugh out of it relaxes one’s blood vessels that reduces strain in the heart.


TAGS: april, day, Julian, Noah
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