Mother's Day

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Mother's Day
Observed by Most countries
Type Historical
Date Varies regionally
Related to Father's Day
A celebratory cookie.
A celebratory cookie.

Mother's Day is a holiday honouring mothers, celebrated (on various days) in many places around the world. Mothers often receive gifts on this day.


[edit] History

Different countries celebrate Mother's Day on various days of the year because the day has a number of different origins. One school of thought claims this day emerged from a custom of mother worship in ancient Greece. Mother worship — which kept a festival to Cybele, a great mother of gods, and (mythology), the wife of Cronus; was held around the Vernal Equinox around Asia Minor and eventually in Rome itself from the Ides of March (March 15 to March 18). The Romans also had another holiday, Matronalia, that was dedicated to Juno, though mothers were usually given gifts on this day.

In the United States, Mother's Day was copied from England by social activist Julia Ward Howe after the American Civil War with a call to unite women against war. She wrote the Mother's Day Proclamation. In the UK, the day now simply celebrates motherhood and thanking mothers. According to the National Restaurant Association, Mother's Day is now the most popular day of the year to dine out at a restaurant in the United States.[1]

In most countries, Mother's Day is a new concept copied from western civilization. In many African countries, the idea of one Mother's Day has its origins in copying the British concept, although there are many festivals and events celebrating mothers within the many diverse cultures on the African continent that have been there centuries before the colonials arrival. In most of East Asia, Mother's Day is a heavily marketed and commercialized concept copied straight from Mother's Day in the USA.

[edit] US history

Julia Ward Howe wrote the Mother's Day Proclamation in 1870, as a call for peace and disarmament. An excerpt follows:

From the voice of a devastated Earth a voice goes up with
Our own. It says: "Disarm! Disarm!
The sword of murder is not the balance of justice."
Blood does not wipe out dishonor,
Nor violence indicate possession.
As men have often forsaken the plough and the anvil at the summons of war,
Let women now leave all that may be left of home
For a great and earnest day of counsel.
Let them meet first, as women, to bewail and commemorate the dead.
Let them solemnly take counsel with each other as to the means
Whereby the great human family can live in peace...

Howe failed in her attempt to get formal recognition of a Mother's Day for Peace. Her idea was influenced by Ann Jarvis, a young Appalachian homemaker who, starting in 1858, had attempted to improve sanitation through what she called Mothers' Work Days. She organized women throughout the Civil War to work for better sanitary conditions for both sides, and in 1868 she began work to reconcile Union and Confederate neighbors. In parts of the United States it is customary to plant tomatoes outdoors after mother's day (and not before.)

When Jarvis died, her daughter, named Anna Jarvis, started the crusade to found a memorial day for women. The first such Mother's Day was celebrated in Grafton, West Virginia, on May 10, 1908, in the church where the elder Ann Jarvis had taught Sunday School. Grafton is the home to the International Mother's Day Shrine. From there, the custom caught on — spreading eventually to 45 states. The holiday was declared officially by somes states beginning in 1912. In 1914 President Woodrow Wilson declared the first national Mother's Day, as a day for American citizens to show the flag in honour of those mothers whose sons had died in war (with specific reference to The Great War, now knownas World War I). Nine years after the first official Mother's Day holiday, commercialization of the U.S. holiday became so rampant that Anna Jarvis herself became a major opponent of what the holiday had become. Mother's Day continues to this day to be one of the most commercially successful U.S. holidays.

[edit] British history - Mothering Sunday

Main article: Mothering Sunday

Mothering Sunday, commonly called "Mothers' Day" in the United Kingdom, has no direct connection to the American practice. It falls on the fourth Sunday of Lent (exactly three weeks before Easter Sunday). It is believed to have originated from the 16th Century Christian practice of visiting one's mother church annually, which meant that most mothers would be reunited with their children on this day. Most historians believe that young apprentices and young women in servitude were released by their masters that weekend in order to visit their families.[2] As a result of secularization, it is now principally used to celebrate and give thanks for mothers, although it is still recognized in the historical sense by some churches, with attention paid to Mary the mother of Jesus as well as the traditional concept 'mother church'.

[edit] Mother's Days in various parts of the world

Mother's Day is celebrated on different days throughout the world. Examining the trends in Google searches for the term "mothers day" shows two major blips, the smaller one on the fourth Sunday in Lent, and the larger one on the second Sunday in May.[3]

third Sunday in February Norway
Shevat 30 (falls anywhere between January 30 and March 1) Israel
March 5 Georgia
March 6 Slovenia
March 8 Afghanistan, Algeria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, Macedonia, Albania, Bulgaria, Romania, Belarus, Russia, Ukraine, Vietnam. The date coincides with the International Women's Day.
Fourth Sunday in Lent (Mothering Sunday - March 18 in 2007) Ireland, United Kingdom, Nigeria
March 18 (first day of spring) Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, Palestinian Territories, Qatar, Jordan, Kuwait, Sudan,United Arab Emirates, Yemen
April 20 Armenia
First Sunday in May Hungary, Lithuania, Portugal, Spain
May 5 South Korea, Albania (Parents' Day)
May 17 much of South America, El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico, Oman, Pakistan, Singapore
Second Sunday in May
see: Mother's Day (United States)
Anguilla, Aruba, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Barbados,Bangladesh, Belgium, Belize, Bermuda, Bonaire, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Cuba, Croatia, Curaçao, Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Greece, Grenada, Honduras, Hong Kong, Iceland, India, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Latvia, Malta, Malaysia, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Peru, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Singapore, Slovakia, South Africa, Suriname, Switzerland, Taiwan, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, United States, Uruguay, Venezuela, Zimbabwe
March 6 Poland
October 9 Bolivia
first Sunday in May France (except if it coincides with Pentecost day, in which case Mother's Day will be shifted to the first Sunday of June), Dominican Republic, Haiti, Sweden, Morocco
May 3 Nicaragua
February 12 Thailand (the birthday of Queen Sirikit Kitiyakara)
August 5 (Assumption Day) Antwerp (Belgium), Costa Rica
November 10 Malawi
second or third Sunday in October Argentina (Día de la Madre)
last Sunday in June Russia
December 9 Panama, Spain
December 6 Indonesia
20th Jumada al-thani (also called Women's Day) Iran and other Muslim sects, especially Shias. The date is the (disputed) birthday of Fatima Zahra. The Islamic calendar is lunar so it cycles relative to the Western calendar.

[edit] Mother's Day in various languages

  • (al): Dita e Nënës (8 Marsi)
  • (ar) : عيد الأمّ (Eid al-Umm)
  • (arm) : Մայրության օր (Mayrutyan or)
  • (ber) : tameγra n tyemmat
  • (bg) : Ден на майката
  • (bs) : dan majki
  • (ch) : 母亲节 or 母親節 (mǔ qīn jié)
  • (hr) : Majčin dan
  • (cz) : Den Matek
  • (da) : Mors dag
  • (nl) : Moederdag
  • (de) : Muttertag
  • (el) : Γιορτή της Μητέρας
  • (et) : Emadepäev
  • (dar) : روز مادر (Ruz-e Madar)
  • (fi) : Äitienpäivä
  • (fr) : (La) Fête des mères
  • (he) : (he) יום האם (Yom ha-em)
  • (hi) : (hi) Matru din
  • (hr) : Majčin dan
  • (hu) : (Az) Anyák napja
  • (ga) : Lá na Mháithair
  • (is) : Mæðradagur
  • (id) : Hari Ibu
  • (it) : (La) Festa della mamma
  • (ja) : 母の日 (Haha no Hi)
  • (kor) : 어버이날 (Oboi Nal)
  • (lv) : Mātes diena
  • (lt) : Motinos diena
  • (bm) : Hari Ibu
  • (mt) : Jum l-Omm
  • (me) : Dan majki / Дан мајки
  • (no) : Morsdag
  • (per) : روز مادر (Rouz-e Maadar)
  • (pl) : Dzień Matki
  • (pt) : (O) Dia da Mãe
  • (ro) : Ziua mamei
  • (ru) : День Мамы
  • (es) : Día de la Madre
  • (sk) : Deň matiek
  • (sl) : Materinski dan (dan žena oz. žensk)
  • (sv) : Mors dag
  • (sh) : Liepstacoq Bua
  • (ta) : Araw ng mga Ina/Nanay
  • (tam) : Annaiyar Dhinam
  • (th) : วันแม่
  • (tr) : Anneler günü
  • (ua) : Свято Матері
  • (cy) : Sul y Mamau
  • (ma) : Ammamar Dinam
  • (ka) : Ammandira Dina
  • (ie):lá an mháthair

[edit] See also

[edit] References

  1. ^ Patricia Talorico. "Honor thy reservation", The News Journalhhhjjkkkk, April 26, 2006, pp. E1, E6.
  2. ^ "Mothering Sunday", Religion & Ethics, Retrieved on May 28, 2006.
  3. ^ mothers day. Google Trends. Google. Retrieved on Error: invalid time.

[edit] External links