The First of May – and/or – its traditions

Here is my first ‘snippet’ posted on both of my blogs today 1st May 2017:

The day today – and every year – people all over the world will be celebrating May Day.
For some it is, and always has been, a festival to mark the arrival of spring.
In Pre-Christian times it was the festival of Flora, the goddess of flowers.
In many Catholic cultures, May Day is associated with the Virgin Mary. Statues of her were – and are – decorated with wreaths of flowers.

In the late 1800s, May Day was chosen by Socialists and Communists to be celebrated as International Workers’ Day.

The traditional English May Day Rites and Celebrations includes crowning a May Queen and celebrations involving dancing round the maypole.  Morris dancing was also often linked to the May Day celebrations of springtime fertility of the soil and livestock together with revelry with village fetes and community gatherings.

In Britain the Spring Bank Holiday is on the first Monday – NOT always the first day – in May.  It was created in 1978 and effectively changed British history as regards May Day itself.  May 1st in England is not a public holiday unless it falls on a Monday but – as in many ways – the British adjust and have the celebrations on May 1st whatever the day and then have a day off [well many do] on the first Monday in May!

I’ve looked to see what the rest of the world does on this day – and found that across the world it is still a special day – but they call it Labour Day!

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