There are very few holidays and festivals that are common to almost all the countries in the world. One of them is New Year Day. It marks the beginning of a new year and expectations of a new life. This is the festival of joy and hopes. Commonly people have familiar traditions. There are a lot of superstitions all over the world. What is this day for different nations? When is New Year Day in 2017? What common traditions exist across the world?
Historical background of the holiday
This holiday pretends to be one of the most ancient festivals. Babylon is considered to be the Motherland of this day. It began more than one thousand years BC. The people celebrated the beginning of spring. They recognized the exact time according to the position of the Moon and Sun.
In 738 B.C. the Roman calendar was invented. It marked the beginning of spring, growing season. The Gregorian calendar (16th cent.) input the 1st of January as the beginning of the annual cycle. This kind of counting days and months was not taken into use immediately by many countries. But most European territories accepted it. If you share the Internet and ask a question “When is New Year Day 2017, calendar Gregorian?”, the answer will be “January, 1st”.
During the first years of celebration people noticed the cycle of nature. Nevertheless, later religion connected its sense to the holiday. Catholic people honored Mother of God. Years passed and people got a chance to make a festive dinner just for the start of the year. It got the independence. Nowadays each family has its own New Year traditions according to the history and superstitions of each country.
Some nations of the world celebrate New Year Day on the other days. They are:
- the Jewish;
- the Chinese;
- the Iranians;
- the Indians and others.
In spite of the variety of superstitions and traditions concerning food, clothes, celebrating points, different nations have similar expectations as to the beginning of the year.
General facts of the celebration
What is the date of New Year Day 2017? The common answer is on January 1st. Nevertheless, in many countries citizens have vacations. It is a public holiday. Organizations and offices do not work on this date. In some countries the government sets some days for celebrating and visiting relatives. Presents are to be bought beforehand.
The most common thing is happiness and joy during the party. If a person decides to visit European countries on this occasion, he mustn’t ask the Internet, “When is New Year Day 2017?” Only the Chinese or the Indians may not know that it’s on January, 1st.
The first thing is that everybody determines goals for the next year. People think over their lives and make a list of expectations or a plan. They are eager to improve the quality of life or their own behavior.
The next point is a festive dinner. Usually families get together, make delicious dishes. Many mothers have their own secret recipes which are traditional for the holiday. The typical things are:
- a roasted chicken;
- festive cake;
- traditional salads and so on.
During a festive dinner relatives wish everybody happiness, health, career success, children and other aspects. Usually wishes are formed into short toasts.
The fact is that no matter what country you go, you will have a champagne flute, delicious dinner, watch illuminations and fireworks.
Every big city and small town makes a lot of concerts and parades during festive days. New Year Tree is obligatory for each family. Offices and organizations prefer to follow this pleasant rule. Different countries proposed their own decorations. Some hang cookies and candies. Other festive trees have glass balls and tiny figures.
Ordinary and strange superstitions
Kisses are obligatory for all the people. It is necessarily to hug the dearest people, kiss them and wish the best things. People say that the absence of love on this day is a prediction of loneliness during the next year. It is obvious that a kiss at midnight has the strongest power.
A first footer must be a man. One nation demands any male without specific features. Other people expect a visit of a dark-heared man. If you are a young, handsome man, just bring a small gift. It may be a loaf of bread, a coin or just salt. Nobody waits for a woman. She is a messenger of a disaster. First footers with red or blond hair predict bad luck. There is a joke: it is better to kill an unwanted visitor rather than to welcome him.
Black-eyed peas are considered to bring good luck and prosperity to the family. It is a key dish. The hostess of the house may add vegetables and ham, pork and lentil soup. Food concerns to bring the wealth and fortune. Everybody should wear new clothes. It is a part of renewal.
There is a belief that debts are not to be taken to the next year. People try to clear their credit history. Lending money is not good. It is connected with another superstition. Nothing is to be taken out of the house on January, 1st. Even if there is much garbage, store it till next day.
There is a tradition in many countries to open the doors and make a loud noise. It will help to say “Goodbye” to the last year and scare away the evil. Washing clothes is a very bad mark. It may pretend that the dearest man will die.
What day New Year in 2017 is? This year it is on Sunday. The main goal of this date is to merry and be happy. It’s every person’s choice what tradition to accept. Anyway, it must be interesting and hopeful.