History Of April Fool's Across The Globe

A brief look into the history of April Fool's Day.

April Fool’s Day. Celebrated in many countries around the globe. Taken place on the 1st of April every year. It is not considered a national, nor international, holiday. Yet, it is globally recognized and celebrated. It is seen as the one day to play a variety of jokes, pranks and foolishness.


The day itself is seen as the one day to play pranks and hoaxes. All without any backlash, nor consequence. It can be performed on any person you know. In countries, like Britain, New Zealand, South Africa and Canada, there’s the rule of no April Fools’ after Midday. Whereas, a lot of other countries encompass the whole day.

In countries with this rule, there’s a phrase for pranksters after that time. Those who April Fool after midday are taunted. Taunted with; "April Fool's Day's past and gone, You're the fool for making one.”

Other parts of the globe, like a lot of Europe, Brazil, Australia and USA do it all day. It is seen as good sportsmanship to continue all day. In France, kids put paper fish on others’ backs. Then they would shout; “Poisson D’acvril!” Meaning “April’s Fish” in English.


April Fool’s props up as early as the year 1392. Geoffrey Chaucer published his seminal work, Canterbury Tales. Through parables, like messiahs in religious texts, Chaucer alluded to April Fool’s in this epic piece of literature.

Seeing historical origins in Rome and Spain, this day expanded through generations. It mediated through Chaucer’s work. Yet, like a lot of historical information, dates are often disputed.

There really is no matter in what, or when, the origin of this day falls. It is seen as an excuse to have fun, pulling pranks. For it is in human nature to pull pranks. As culture and history show, that pranks can connect people.

For example, Iranians play such pranks on the 13th day of the Persian New Year. To which happens to fall on April 1st. In this culture, it is called Sizdah Bedar. And it is the oldest prank-tradition in the world.

The French may have the “Poisson D’acvril”, but Spanish-speaking nations have practiced this on December 28th. Otherwise known as the Day of the Holy Innocents. This extends to parts of Belgium, even the Flemish parts. To the Flemish, it was a way for kids to lock out adults, only to let them in for treats.


Every nation and culture has a way of celebrating for pranks. In many cultures, it is seen as a way of bringing people together. To which, I suggest; What is better? War, or Pranks?


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