Did you Know?
The modern Mother’s Day is celebrated on various days in many parts of the world, most commonly in March, April, or May as a day to honor mothers and motherhood. In the UK and Ireland, it follows the old traditions of Mothering Sunday, celebrated in March/April.
This day may have emerged from a custom of mother worship in ancient Greece, which kept a festival to Cybele, a great mother of Greek gods. This festival was held around the Vernal Equinoxaround Asia Minor and eventually in Rome itself from the Ides of March (15 March) to 18 March.
The ancient Romans also had another holiday, Matronalia, that was dedicated to Juno, though mothers were usually given gifts on this day.
In Europe there were several long standing traditions where a specific Sunday was set aside to honor motherhood and mothers such as Mothering Sunday. Mothering Sunday celebrations are part of the liturgical calendar in several Christian denominations, including Anglicans, and in the Catholic calendar is marked as Laetare Sunday, the fourth Sunday in Lent to honour the Virgin Mary and your “mother” church (the main church of the area). Children and young people who were “in service” (servants in richer households) were given a day off on that date so they could visit their families (or, originally, return to their “mother church). The children would pick wild flowers along the way to place them in the church or to give them to their mothers as gifts.
One of the early calls to celebrate Mother’s Day in the United States was the “Mother’s Day Proclamation” by Julia Ward Howe. Written in 1870, it was a pacifist reaction to the carnage of the American Civil War and the Franco-Prussian War. The Proclamation was tied to Howe’s feminist belief that women had a responsibility to shape their societies at the political level
International Women’s Day was celebrated for the first time in 28 February 1909, in the US, by which time Anna Jarvis had already begun her national campaign in the US. It is now celebrated in many countries on March 8…
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