Pope Gregory XIII: Father of April Fools’ Day?

Pope Gregory XIII: Father of April Fools’ Day?

In 1582 Pope Gregory XIII instituted the (you guessed it) Gregorian Calendar, which moved New Year’s Day from March 32nd (honest) to January 1st. People who didn’t know that March 32nd was now April 1st and were still celebrating the old New Year looked pretty foolish that day, hence April Fools’ Day.

Or maybe the story’s just a prank. Pretty good yarn, anyway.


“A brief, totally sincere history of April Fools’ Day,” Sarah Caplan, Washington Post

“April Fools’ Day, explained earnestly,” Michelle Hackman, Vox

“April Fools: The Roots of an International Tradition,” Stephen Winick, Folklife Today

“April Fools International: World’s Best Pranks Ever?” Anne-Sophie Goninet, Worldcrunch

“No Kidding: We Have No Idea How April Fools’ Day Started,” Ashley Ross, TIME

“Stamos Documentary? Trader Joe’s Closing? Cornhub? Must Be April Fools’ Day,” NPR

“April Fools’ Day pranks: 2016’s comprehensive, updating (and upsetting) list,” Abby Ohlheiser and Caitlin Dewey Washington Post

“How brands celebrated April Fools’ Day with imaginary products,” Libby Nelson, Vox

“April Fools’ pranks from across the internet, ranked from best to worst,” Chris Plante, The Verge

“11 of the Greatest Pranks of All Time,” Abbey Stone, Mental Floss

“The Internet Ruined April Fool’s Day,” Megan Garber, The Atlantic


Short Link: http://wp.me/p6sb6-nvA

Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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