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New Year’s Day, which is on January 1, marks the start of the year in the Gregorian calendar.
New Year’s Day is less popular in Great Britain than Christmas and
it is not so widely celebrated.
Traditional New Year parties and dances are held on New Year’s Eve.
People see the Old Year out and the New Year in.
In Scotland they celebrate New Year, which is known as Hogmanay.
It is the biggest festival of the year. It is time for merrymaking, the giving
presents and observance of the old customs. At midnight Scottish
people hold their hands in a large circle and sing the song
“Auld Lang Syne” by Robert Burns. There are some traditions on
New Year’s Day.
One of them is called the First Footing. The first man who come into
the house is very important because he brings luck.
This man (not a woman) must be healthy, young, pretty-looking.
He brings presents – bread, a piece of coal or a coin.
St. Valentine's Day
Saint Valentine's Day
It is a very sentimental unofficial holiday, which is celebrated on the 14th of February by those who believe in love and friendship.
On St Valentine`s Day people
send a special valentine to those who they love.
Some people buy
presents for their sweethearts or
give them a red rose, a symbol
Valentine was a Christian priest who didn’t like the new law. He secretly married people who were in love. One night the Emperor’s soldiers caught him and put him in prison.
Many people were sorry for Valentine and visited him in prison. One of them was a daughter of a prison guard. On the day of his execution Valentine wrote a note to her and signed it “Love from your Valentine”. This was on 14 February 269 AD.
There is a beautiful legend behind St Valentine’s Day. Saint Valentine lived in Rome in the third century AD. At that time the Emperor of Rome was Claudius who thought that single men were better soldiers than married, so he passed a law which banned marriage.
Since then 14 February has been the Day of Love,
when people send love letters and presents to each other.
They don’t sign the cards with their names,
but write “Guess who” or “Your Valentine”.
Roses are red,
Violets are blue,
And so are you
And leaves are green,
You are the sweetest thing
I’ve ever seen.
I dream about you
Be my Valentine
And hold me tight
I’ll be your sweetheart,
If you will be mine,
All my life I’ll be
Saint Patrick’s Day is celebrated each year on March 17th. In Ireland, Saint Patrick's Day is both a holy day and a national holiday. Saint Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland as he was the one who brought Christianity to the Irish.
Saint Patrick's Day
One traditional icon of the day is the shamrock. Patrick used the three-leafed shamrock to explain the Trinity, how the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit could all exist as separate elements of the same entity.
His followers adopted the custom of wearing a shamrock on his feast day.
April Fool's Day
April Fool’s Day is the first of April.
The fun of the holiday is to play silly but harmless jokes on family members and friends. The victim of these jokes is called an April fool.
This holiday first appeared in France when the French began to use the Gregorian calendar, some people continued to use the old calendar and to celebrate New Year’s Day in April 1. These people were called April fools. Today, April Fool’s jokes are played mostly by children, who enjoy the holiday very much.
In England tradition of celebrating Easter is deep-rooted in the history of the nation. Easter is a church holiday.
The main symbols of Easter and spring include bunnies and rabbits.
Easter is a feast that is not always held on the same date each year.
Easter Day is celebrated on the first Sunday following the first full moon after the spring equinox
Easter marks the end of the forty-day long fasting of Lent.
The word Easter is thought to have derived from the goddess Eostre, an Anglo-Saxon Goddess.
Easter is the time for holidays, festivals and time for giving chocolate Easter eggs, the day of parties, and above all a celebration that Jesus raised from the dead and lives forever. Eggs play an important part in Easter celebration; they are given to children. In Christianity, egg represents rebirth and symbolizes with the resurrection of the Lord. Traditionally Easter parades of people in bright new spring clothes are held on this day.
St Georges Day
St George's Day in England remembers St George, England's patron saint. The anniversary of his death, which is on April 23, is seen as England's national day. According to the legend, he was a soldier in the Roman army who killed a dragon and saved a princess.
The most widely recognized symbol of St George's Day is St George's cross. This is a red cross on a white background, which is often displayed as a flag. It is used as England's national flag, forming part of the Union Flag, the national flag of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
It is a celebration of the coming of spring.
On May Day different outdoor events are held.
Traditional English May Day celebrations include Morris dancing, crowning a May Queen and dancing around a Maypole.
Mother's Day is traditionally celebrated on the first Sunday in Lent.
On this holiday mother is rewarded for all her work about the house during the year.
Her husband and children give her presents and traditionally bring her breakfast in bed.
All children despite their age return to their homes.
In June there is Father’s Day. On this day fathers get gift cards and a lot of attention from their children.
It is celebrated to recognize the contribution that fathers and father figures make to the lives of their children.
This day celebrates fatherhood and male parenting.
Although it is celebrated on a variety of dates worldwide, many countries observe this day on the third Sunday in June.
Queen's Official Birthday
The Queen celebrates two birthdays each year: her actual birthday on 21 April 1926 and her official birthday on a Saturday in June.
Her father, grandfather and Queen Victoria all had birthdays in winter so the official Queen’s birthday is celebrated in the UK in June when the weather is warmer.
The official birthday of Queen Elizabeth II is marked each year by a military parade and march-past, known as Trooping the Colour (Carrying of the Flag).
The official name is “the Queen’s Birthday Parade”.
It is the biggest royal event of the year.
Each June, the Queen and other members of the Royal Family attend the Trooping the Colour ceremony on Horse Guards Parade, Whitehall in London.
The Queen attends the ceremony to take the salute from thousands of guardsmen who parade the Colour (their regiment’s flag).The parade route goes from Buckingham Palace along The Mall to Horseguards Parade, Whitehall and back again.
The celebrations in London are a wonderful display of soldiers in red jackets, horses with riders in yellow jackets and musicians marching in a band.
The weather on this day is usually nice and sunny. The royal family watch the Birthday Parade from the balcony of Buckingham Palace in London. The soldiers in beautiful uniforms ride and march along the Mall - a street in central London. You can see the Queen too. She rides in front of the soldiers. You can hear music and see bright flags, which fly high in the air.
The parade is very beautiful and a lot of people from all over the world come to watch it. The parade has a name. The name is "Trooping the Colour” because "trooping” means "walking together” and "colour” means a flag.
Halloween is a festival that takes place on October 31. In Great Britain children wear costumes and masks and go trick-or-treating. A favourite Halloween custom is to make a jack-o-lantern (the children scrape our a pumpkin and cut the eyes, nose and mouth). They light a candle inside the pumpkin to scare their friends. Fortunetelling and storytelling about ghosts and witches are popular activities.
Halloween developed from new year festivals and festivals of the dead. Christian church established a festival on November 1 called All Saints' Day so that people could continue to celebrate their festivals.
There is a special day in England which is called Bonfire Night or Guy Fawkes Day.
On that day, in 1605, Guy Fawkes tried to blow up the Houses of Parliament and kill King James I. He didn't succeed. The King's men found the bomb, took Guy Fawkes to the Tower and cut off his head.
Guy Fawkes Day
Since that day the British celebrate the 5th of November. They burn a dummy, made of straw and old clothes, in a bonfire and let off fireworks. This dummy is called a "guy" (like Guy Fawkes).
Children use guys to make money. They stand in the street and shout “ Penny for the guy”
If they collect enough money they can buy some fireworks.
Remembrance Day is on
It is a special day set aside to remember all those men and women who were killed during the two World Wars and other conflicts.
Special services are held at war memorials and churches all over Britain.
November is the time of the year when we wear a red poppy in memory of those who sacrificed their lives for us during wars.
Wreaths are laid beside war memorials by companies, clubs and societies.
People also leave small wooden crosses by the memorials in remembrance of a family member who died in war.
Christmas Day, December 25, is the most popular holiday in Great Britain.
Christmas symbolizes the birth of Jesus Christ.
Every year the people of Norway give the city of London a present. It’s a big Christmas Tree and it stands in Trafalgar Square.
Central streets are beautifully decorated.
Before Christmas, groups of singers go from house to house, they sing Christmas carols and collect money for charity.
People decorate their houses with holly and mistletoe.
They send Christmas cards to greet each other.
Christmas trees are set up in houses, in the streets and churches. They are always decorated with lights, balls and small toys. Christmas is a family holiday.
The family usually meets for a traditional dinner
of turkey and Christmas pudding. Everyone gives and receives presents.
Boxing Day is celebrated on December 26th. It comes straight away after Christmas Day. This is an old tradition, when in old times rich people used to give their servants money or “Christmas boxes”. Now it is the day when people simply have rest or visit their friends.
On the eve of Christmas children hang their stockings at the end of their beds, hoping that Santa Claus will come down the chimney during the night and put presents into them.
If the child didn’t behave properly Santa Claus can put there a piece of coal as punishment.
Santa Claus got his name from a man known as St. Nicolas, who lived in the fourth century. He gave his wealth to the poor and often to children.
The project was done by
6 form school 347