Playing a joke
Playing a joke
Playing a joke
Playing a joke

April Fool's Day
Topic(s):   Holidays & Celebrations
Quick Facts
Name: April Fool's Day or All Fools' Day
Celebrated on: April 1
Started: April 1, 1582?

April Foolís Day is the day to play harmless jokes on each other.

No one knows how April Foolís Day started. People do not even agree on how to spell it. (Some say April Foolsí Day.) Many people think it started when the calendar changed.

In ancient times, people celebrated the new year on April 1. In 1582, a new calendar was made. It started the new year on January 1. Some people did not hear of the change. Some refused to change. They were called fools. People played tricks on them.

People were playing tricks on each other before that, though. Some people think April Foolís Day started because nature fools us at that time. One day it is spring. The next, it is winter again. Others think it may be linked with ancient, spring celebrations. Some even connect it to the Noah story from the Bible.

April Foolís Day is celebrated in many countries. In France, the one who gets tricked is called an April Fish. Baby fish in April are easily caught. The Kick me sign may have started in Scotland. The fool in Scotland is called a gowk.

One traditional trick is the foolís errand. The fool is asked to deliver a note to someone. When that person opens the note, it says something like, Donít you laugh. Donít you smile. Send the gowk another mile. That person sends the fool to someone else with the note. Someone ends the joke by saying, April Fool!

Resource information

April Fool's Day History. (n.d.). Retrieved June 25, 2013, from

April fool's day. (n.d.). Retrieved June 25, 2013, from

April fools' day: Origin and history. (n.d.). Retrieved June 25, 2013, from

Mikkelson, B. (2009, April 1). April Fools' Day Origins. Retrieved from

The origin of April foolís day. (n.d.). Retrieved June 25, 2013, from

Wilkinson, P. R. (2008). The concise thesaurus of traditional English metaphors. London, England: Routledge.

Citation information

APA Style:† † † † April Fool's Day. (2013, March). Retrieved from Facts4Me at

MLA Style: † † † "April Fool's Day." Facts4Me. Mar. 2013.

Back To Previous          Back To Top

Copyright © 2006 - 2018, Facts4Me. All rights reserved.