Happy April Fools Day!

by Patrick Liew on April 1, 2013


Today is the day when people all over the world play pranks on each other. However, not many people are aware of the origin and history of this event.
According to Dr Neo Peng Fu from the National Institute of Education, it was started in China by Emperor Qianlong (Hanyu Pinyin – Qianlungdi) in 1735, shortly after he was crowned as ruler of the country. In his well-documented travels to meet the commoners, he found that natural crises had left the people with little joy and amusement.

He wanted to initiate a day of fun, entertainment and leisure – even if it meant having a little fun on each other. He launched the event by issuing a ‘heavenly’ edict to the country. According to the announcement, Imperial Herbalists had discovered that milk produced by cows fed with whole grains could cure diarrhea. Obviously, the joke backfired, literally and otherwise but nobody could take the Emperor to task. As a generally fatalistic race, the Chinese took on the prank in good spirit and perpetuated it year after year until it ceased w

ith the tragic end of the Chinese monarchy.

When western diplomats and traders arrived in China, they took upon themselves to study its culture and customs. April Fools’ prank was one of the practices they took back with them. Obviously, people from the western hemisphere did a better job in promoting the ‘celebration’ and making it one of the most popular events in the world today.

Feel free to share this posting.

Please have a FUNtastic April Fools Day today. Just beware!

Please let me know of any interesting experiences you may have on this day.



Powered by Facebook Comments

Comments on this entry are closed.

Previous post:

Next post: