Colegiul Nationa Unirea, Focsani
Lucrare scrisa pentru obtinerea atestatului la limba engleza British holidays,celebrations and traditions
Elev, Boldeanu Elena-Simona
Profesor coordonator, Irina Bicescu
Table of contens
INTRODUCTION. 4 JANUARY HOLIDAYS New Year................................4 Twelfth Night. 5 FEBRUARY HOLIDAYS Candlemas Day6 Valentines Day8 MARCH HOLIDAYS St. Davids Day8 St. Patricks Day..9 MARCH/APRIL HOLIDAYS Pancake Day.9 Maundy Thursday10 Easter11 APRIL HOLIDAYS April Fools Day..11 MAY HOLIDAYS May..12 JUNE HOLIDAYS Tropping the colours13 JULY HOLIDAYS Swan Upping.14
OCTOBER HOLIDAYS Halloween..14 NOVEMBER HOLIDAYS Bonfire Night15 Remembrance Day15 St. Andrews Day..16 DECEMBER HOLIDAYS Advent Day..16 Christmas Day17 Boxing Day..17 BRITISH TRADITIONS History of Afternoon Tea.18 VOCABULARY.19 BIBLIOGRAPHY...20
This essay tends to be an introductory survey of the historical and social background of British holidays, celebrations and traditions. People of every culture celebrate holidays. Although the word itself holiday literally means holy day most of the American and British holidays are not related to religion but more commemorative in nature and origin as well. Public holidays (known as bank holiday in the United Kingdom and Ireland) are those holidays when the majority of the population who are not employed in essential services (like fire dept, ambulance, police) receive the days as holiday; and those employed in essential services usually receive an extra pay for these days. The United States bank holiday refers to those special cases when the banks should be closed because of executive orders as a remedy for financial crisis. Celebrations are o party or a special event at which you celebrate something. For example: Christmas Day, Easter, Halloween . Most English-speaking countries have similar festivals and holidays which are important. However, there are particular days which the others do not celebrate, such as Independence Day in the United States. The reason I choose this subject is that I am very found of the British holidays, traditions and celebrations. Since I was little I have loved and I used to imitate them when I played with my dolls. The most frequent performed was the tea ceremony. The cups, the kettle, the milk, the sugar, the lemon slices, the biscuits, everything was at its place in perfect order. When the tea was coming even the teddy bears were thrilled because they knew that something wonderful was about to happen.
JANUARY HOLIDAYS NEW YEAR
New Year in United Kingdom is celebrated on January 1, the first day of the first month as per the Gregorian Calendar. This day was officially declared as New Year's Day in 1752. It is the time to ring out the old year and bring the new one by merry making. New Year is the much awaited celebration for the people of UK. They love to enjoy each and every minute of the going year. Theme parties, salsa dance and live performances are the some of the rocking events of New Year in UK. Another enthralling part of the New Year festivities are the New Year cruises in England. These are the most unique and memorable part of New Year in England. So, if you are planning to have an exciting New Year blast, England is all set for one. New Year Traditions in Britain A very old custom of 'first footing' is still followed in Britain with sincerity. It is said that the first male visitor to the house on the New Year's day brings good luck. A blonde, a red-haired or a woman is not allowed to enter the house first as they are supposed to bring bad luck. The male visitor usually brings money, bread or coal as these are considered auspicious gifts. At some places, there is a tradition of gifting the holy mistletoe. It is believed to bring prosperity for the recipient. Another tradition which is popularly celebrated is the "burning of the bush". It symbolizes burning of all past events. New Year Celebrations in Britain New Year celebrations in Britain is a colorful affair. New Year is celebrated as the most important festival in United Kingdom. Midnight parties, lavish meals, champagnes, music, dance and fireworks are the important parts of New Year in England. It is the biggest night-out of the year. Apart from parties and meals, another important part of New Year celebrations in UK is the biggest New Year parade. The parade starts at noon walking down the streets via Whitehall, Pall Mall and finishing in Berkley square. Musicians, dancers, acrobats, drums and other entertainers do a splendid job to make the event most distinguished one. Everyone present at the Berkley is openly invited to join the carnival and enjoy the festive occasion.
TWELFTH NIGHTTwelfth Night is defined by the Shorter Oxford English Dictionary as "the evening of the fifth of January, preceding Twelfth Day, the eve of the Epiphany, formerly the last day of the Christmas festivities and observed as a time of merrymaking". However, there is currently some confusion as to which night is Twelfth5
Night: some count the night of Epiphany itself (sixth of January) to be Twelfth Night. One source of this confusion is said to be the Medieval custom of starting each new day at sunset, so that Twelfth Night precedes Twelfth Day. In some cases the 25 December is the first day of Christmas, so therefore 5 January is the 12th day. It is erroneous to count the Christmas season as the 12 days after Christmas Day, making 6 January the Twelfth Day, as 6 January is the Epiphany, and church seasons do not overlap. A recent belief in some Englishspeaking countries holds that it is unlucky to leave Christmas decorations hanging after Twelfth Night, a belief originally attached to the festival of Candlemas which celebrates the Presentation of Jesus at the Temple (2 February). Origins and history In medieval and Tudor England, the Twelfth Night marked the end of a winter festival that started on All Halows Eve now more commonly known as Halloween. The Lord of Misrule symbolizes the world turning upside down. On this day the King and all those who were high would become the peasants and vice versa. At the beginning of the Twelfth Night festival, a cake that contained a bean was eaten. The person who found the bean would rule the feast. Midnight signaled the end of his rule and the world would return to normal. Traditions Food and drink are the center of the celebrations in modern times, and all of the most traditional ones go back many centuries. The punch called wassail is consumed especially on Twelfth Night, but throughout Christmas time, especially in the UK. Around the world, special pastries, such as the tortell and king cake are baked on Twelfth Night, and eaten the following day for the Feast of the Epiphany celebrations.
FEBRUARY HOLIDAYS Candlemas DayCandlemas Day is also named The Cristian festival of lights and it is celebrated on 2nd February. This ancient festival marks the midpoint of winter, halfway between the shortest day and the spring equinox. Candlemas is a traditional Cristian festival that commemorates the ritual purification of Mary forty days after the birth of her son Jesus. On this day, Cristians remember the presentation of Jesus Christ in the Temple. Forty days after the birth of a Jewish boy, it was the custom to take him to the temple in Jerusalem to be presented to6
god by his thankful parents. In pre-Christian times, this day was known as the Feast of Lights and celebrated the increase strength of the life-giving sun as winter gave way to spring. How did the 2nd February come to be called Candlemas? It was the day of the year when all the candles, that were used in the church during the coming year, were brought into church and a blessing was said over them- so it was the Festival Day (or mass) of the Candle. Candles were important in those days not only because there was no electric lights. Some people thought they gave protection against plague and illness and famine. For Christians they were (and still are) a reminder of something even more important. Before Jesus came to earth, it was as if everyone was in the dark. People often felt lost and lonely. Afraid. As if they were on their own , with no one to help them. As if he is a guiding light to them in the darkness. Christians often talk of Jesus as the light of the world- and candles are lit during church services to remind Christians of this.
Candlemas is a day which holds many different customs. The Romans has a custom of lighting candles to scare away evil spirits in the winter. One of the most interesting custom took place in Scotland. In the olden days, Candlemas was the day when children brought candles to school so that the classrooms could have light on dull days. As time went on, gas lighting took over from candle light. The children took money to the teacher who was supposed to spend it on sweets and cakes for the children to eat. The boy or the girl taking in the most money were declared Candlemas King and Queen and they ruled for six weeks. They had the power to make one whole afternoon a week a playtime and they could also let anyone they wished of punishment. Other names for Candlemas Day. Candlemass Day also has two other names. One is the Presentation of Jesus Christ in the Temple. The other is the Purification of Blessed Virgin Mary. Both these names come from special events in the life of baby Jesus.7
Candlemas Day Weather-lore, beliefs and sayings. People believe that Candlemas Day predicted the weather for the rest of the winter. The weather proverbs express the idea that a fine bright sunny Candlemas Day means that there is more winter to come, whereas a cloudy wet stormy Candlemas Day means that the worse of winter is over.
Saint Valentine's Day, often simply Valentin