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Mothers Day And It's Origin

Aug 17, 2007
The Ancient Greek and Roman cultures can be said to be the originators of the tradition of honoring our mothers. The religious festivals and spring were the time when mothers were specifically honored. Coming to the contemporary origination of the mother's day celebration in present day United States, it was Julia Ward Howe, author of the words of the Battle Hymn of the Republic who purported that a day should be decided upon to be celebrated as Mother's Day. This would be a commemoration to peace according to her.

However she wasn't taken seriously, but still continued to hold mother's day meetings in Massachusetts every year. Finally it was Mrs. Anna Jarvis who got the credit of getting mother's day celebrations formalized in the United States. Her inspiration was her own mother, who dedicated a lifetime for the upbringing of a family of eleven children. On the second death anniversary of her mother, the second Sunday of May, she convinced her mother's parish in West Virginia for mother's day celebrations. Her mother's favorite flower, the white carnation was used to decorate the church.

Since then the white carnation has been a symbol of a mother who has passed away and a red one for a living mother. This though has changed over the times and now many flowers are accepted as signifying a tribute to the mother. In 1914, President Woodrow Wilson declared Mother's day a national holiday. In the United States the traditional way of celebrating this day is to bring your mother flowers and take her on a special meal.

The white chrysanthemum in Australia has taken the place of the white carnation as it is the most prolific flower in May. In Denmark, Finland, Italy, Turkey, Japan, Australia and Belgium, the second Sunday of May is celebrated as Mother's Day while some other countries do that on another day. Sweden and France celebrate it on the last Sunday of May and is more like a family birthday to them.

There is a great connection between Mother's day and spring for in Lebanon it is celebrated on the first day of spring and in South Africa mother's day celebrations happen on the first Sunday of May. The festival Durga Puja in honor of the divine mother is celebrated as a ten day elaborate affair in India. In Spain and Portugal mother's day is celebrated on December 8th when they not only honor their own mothers but also the Virgin Mary.
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