Happy New Year 2023: History, Significance and Everything you Need to Know
The first day of the new year on the Gregorian calendar is always a joyous one since it marks the beginning of a new year, a fresh start. Celebrations of the New Year are held all around the globe, with people gathering together to exchange well wishes and celebrate the coming of another year with their loved ones. On this day, people put up decorations, have parties, prepare special meals for their loved ones, and make plans to go on excursions. But the question of why we hold this day in such high regard and why we celebrate it emerges.
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New Year History
People say that the idea of a “new year” began in ancient Babylon in the year 2,000 BC, which is about 4,000 years ago. The Babylonians thought of the new year as an 11-day festival called “Akitu.” Each day of the festival, which started on the first new moon after the spring equinox, had a different ritual (typically around late March). The festival was a way to remember how the sky god Marduk was said to have won over the sea goddess Tiamat. It was also a time to crown a new king or let the old one stay in power.
New Year Significance
Today, most countries start celebrating New Year’s Day on December 31, which is New Year’s Eve and continue until the early hours of January 1. People who go to parties at this timeshare meals, good feelings, and prayers for luck in the coming year. People gather in many places to watch the usual fireworks. People believe that a new year is a fresh start, so they start over and make plans for how they want to live their lives. A person can promise to change an unwanted habit or behavior and make personal goals.
Why does New Year’s Happen on January 1?
Over time, the early Roman calendar drifted out of sync with the sun, and in 46 BC, Emperor Julius Caesar set out to correct the issue by conferring with the foremost astronomers and mathematicians of the day. As a result, the Julian calendar was created, which is very similar to the Gregorian calendar we use today.
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Janus, the Roman god of new beginnings, is a likely inspiration for Caesar’s decision to designate January 1 as the new year’s first day. For Janus’ birthday, Romans would offer sacrifices, give each other gifts, decorate their dwellings with laurel branches, and throw wild parties.
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Later, Christian rulers in mediaeval Europe temporarily changed the first day of the year to celebrate holidays with more religious significance, such as the birthday of Jesus Christ on December 25 or the feast of the Annunciation on March 25. (the Feast of the Annunciation). The observance of January 1 as New Year’s Day was reinstated by Pope Gregory XIII in 1582.
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