Father’s Day – Origin and interesting facts

Father’s Day is celebrated all over the world.However, the dates and manner of celebrations differ from one country to another.

Origin of Father’s Day

There are various theories related to the origin of this day.

  • It is believed that the custom of honoring fathers on a special day is more than 4000 years old. This tradition can be traced back to the ruins of Babylon. According to scholars, a young boy named Elmesu carved a Father’s day message on a card made of clay, wishing good health and a long life to his father.
  • Modern version of this day originated in the United States when Ms. Sonora Louise Smart Dodd started a rigorous campaign to celebrate Father’s Day in the US. She got inspired by Ms. Anna Jarvi’s struggle to promote Mother’s Day.

When is it celebrated?

Different countries celebrate Father’s Day on different dates:

  • In India, Argentina, UK, USA, France, Netherlands, Japan, Chile and Canada;it is celebrated on the third Sunday of June.
  • First Sunday in September is Father’s Day in Australia, Sweden and New Zealand
  • In Norway, Denmark, Finland; it falls on the second Sunday in November.
  • In Thailand,it is celebrated on the birthday of King BhumibolAdulyadej.
  • In Spain, it is celebrated on March 19th (St. Joseph’s Day) and in Germany on Ascension Thursday (40 days after Easter is Father’s Day).

How is it celebrated?

Father’s Day celebrations may differ across the globe but the spirit remains the same. Here’s how different countries celebrate this day:

In Thailand, December 5th is Father’s Day (Wạnph̀x), the birthday of King BhumibolAdulydej. According to an old tradition, people give Canna Lilies to their father on this day. This flower is thought to have masculine association.

Father’s Day in Italy (Festa del Papa) falls on St. Joseph’s day (March 19th). It is a day to commemorate San Guiseppe who was a symbol of compassion, love and generosity. This day features a grand feast of traditional Italian cookies and breads, and people shower their fathers with gratitude, gifts and favors.

Father’s Day (Vatertag) in Germany is a federal holiday. Celebrated on the 40th day of Easter, it involves men pulling wagons that are loaded with liquor into the woods for an adventurous hike.

United Kingdom
In the UK, this day is all about family gatherings involving dinners and gifts. Government agencies and offices also sponsor large scale events on Father’s Day to promote strong bonding of families for a successful life.

On 23rd February, Father’s Day (Den’ ottsa) is celebrated as Defender of the Fatherland Day. What started as a military commemoration continues to honor soldiers in parades across the country. Not just their father but women also show appreciation to all important men in their lives on this day.

South Africa
In South Africa, people go for picnics, fishing or enjoy a small meal with the family in a restaurant.

In Australia, this day is rejoiced at home at breakfast meetings held by families. Many clubs and cultural societies also organize parties and get-togethers.

This is a relatively new concept in India and the celebrations are somewhat similar to the US celebrations.

No matter which language you use to express gratitude to your father, make sure to show your heartfelt appreciation to him this Father’s Day.

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