What is the origin of April Fools’, I’d like to know. The internet is no help on the subject. The prevalent theory seems to be regarding the Pope’s decree to change the start of the calendar year from April to January 1st. Yet, not even the definitive internet resource for urban legends and such things – snopes.com – wasn’t able to offer much help on the topic:
Claim: April Fools’ Day began in the 1500s when the Gregorian calendar took over from the Julian. Those who forgot the change and attempted to celebrate New Year’s (previously celebrated on the 1st of April) on the wrong date were teased as ‘April fools.’
Then there is the theory that it is somehow related to springtime, when nature fools us with unpredictable weather (which reminds me: did I mention we got a little snow yesterday?)
According to some, playing pranks on April Fools (or any day) is far from innocent fun. From one website (here):
The spirit behind April Fools’ Day is diametrically opposite to the Christian way of life. Christ not only said, “…whosoever shall say, You fool, shall be in danger of hell fire,” but He also instructed, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Matt. 22:39). Christ further expounds on this principle in Matthew 7:12: “Therefore all things whatsoever you would that men should do to you, do you even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.” This is commonly referred to as “The Golden Rule.” It sets the standard by which we are to conduct ourselves toward others—treating others the way we would want them to treat us.