New Year’s Eve – the oldest holiday
In just a few hours, people all around the world will say their goodbyes to 2008 and wish each other health and happiness in the coming 2009, celebrating today and in the next few days.
Not only is this holiday the most popular holiday worldwide, but it is also the oldest known in human history. The tradition for a celebration on the verge of the New Year dates back to ancient times. 60 centuries ago, the New Year for ancient Babylonians started with the first new moon after the first day of spring – they sowed the new crops and celebrated for eleven days.
It was in the 16th century that January 1st marked the New Year – the practice was introduced in Venice, and many other European countries soon followed. Gradually all countries using the Gregorian calendar accepted this date as a beginning of each new year.