May Day occurs on May 1 and refers to any of several public holidays. Events 305 - Diocletian and Maximian retire from the office of Roman Emperor. Lists of holidays The words holiday or vacation have related meanings in different English-speaking countries and continents but will usually refer to one of  In many countries, May Day is synonymous with International Workers' Day, or Labour Day, which celebrates the social and economic achievements of the labour movement. International Workers' Day (a name used interchangeably with May Day) is a celebration of the social and economic achievements of the international Labour Labour Day is an annual Holiday celebrated all over the world that resulted from efforts of The labour movement or labor movement is a broad term for the development of a collective organization of working people, to campaign in their own interest for better As a day of celebration the holiday has ancient origins, and it can relate to many customs that have survived into modern times. Many of these customs are due to May Day being a cross-quarter day, meaning that (in the Northern Hemisphere where it is almost exclusively celebrated) it falls approximately halfway between the spring equinox and summer solstice. A cross-quarter day is a day falling approximately halfway between a Solstice and an Equinox. Northern Hemisphere is the half of a Planet that is North of the Equator —the word hemisphere literally means 'half ball' An equinox is the event of the Sun passing over the Earth's equator in its annual cycle Solstices occur twice a year when the tilt of the Earth's axis is most oriented toward or away from the Sun, causing the Sun to reach its northernmost and southernmost extremes
The earliest May Day celebrations appeared in pre-Christian Europe, Walpurgis Night of the Germanic countries. A Christian is a person who adheres to Christianity, a monotheistic Religion centered on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth Walpurgis Night is a traditional religious holiday (celebrated by Pagans Roman Catholics and Satanists ref> About the Church of Satan alike celebrated The Germanic peoples are a historical group of Indo-European -speaking peoples originating in Northern Europe and identified by their use of the Germanic Many pre-Christian indigenous celebrations were eventually banned or Christianized during the process of Christianization in Europe. The historical phenomenon of Christianization (or Christianisation &mdash see spelling differences) the conversion of individuals to Christianity The historical phenomenon of Christianization (or Christianisation &mdash see spelling differences) the conversion of individuals to Christianity As a result, a more secular version of the holiday continued to be observed in the schools and churches of Europe well into the 20th century. In this form, May Day may be best known for its tradition of dancing the Maypole and crowning of the Queen of the May. The maypole is a tall wooden pole (traditionally of Maple ( Acer) hawthorn or Birch) sometimes erected with several long coloured The May Queen or Queen of May is a term which has two distinct but related meanings as a mythical figure and as a holiday Personification. Today various Neopagan groups celebrate reconstructed (to varying degrees) versions of these customs on 1 May. Neopaganism or Neo-Paganism is an Umbrella term used to identify a wide variety of modern religious movements particularly those influenced by historical Events 305 - Diocletian and Maximian retire from the office of Roman Emperor.
The day was a traditional summer holiday in many pre-Christian European pagan cultures. A Christian is a person who adheres to Christianity, a monotheistic Religion centered on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth Paganism (from Latin paganus, meaning "country dweller rustic" is a word used to refer to various religions and religious beliefs from across the world While February 1 was the first day of Spring, May 1 was the first day of summer; hence, the summer solstice on June 25 (now June 21) was Midsummer. Events 1327 - Teenaged Edward III is crowned King of England, but the country is ruled by his mother Queen Spring is one of the four Temperate Seasons Spring marks the transition from Winter into Summer. Events 305 - Diocletian and Maximian retire from the office of Roman Emperor. Summer is one of the four Temperate Seasons Summer marks the warmest time of year with the longest days Solstices occur twice a year when the tilt of the Earth's axis is most oriented toward or away from the Sun, causing the Sun to reach its northernmost and southernmost extremes Events 524 - Battle of Vézeronce, the Franks defeat the Burgundians Events 524 - Godomar, King of the Burgundians defeats the Franks at the Battle of Vézeronce. Midsummer may simply refer to the period of time centered upon the summer solstice, but more often refers to specific European celebrations that accompany the actual solstice In the Roman Catholic tradition, May is observed as Mary's month, and in these circles May Day is usually a celebration of the Blessed Virgin Mary. In this connection, in works of art, school skits, and so forth, Mary's head will often be adorned with flowers. Fading in popularity since the late 20th century is the giving of "May baskets," small baskets of sweets and/or flowers, usually left anonymously on neighbours' doorsteps. 
May Day can refer to various labour celebrations conducted on May 1 that commemorate the fight for the eight hour day. International Workers' Day (a name used interchangeably with May Day) is a celebration of the social and economic achievements of the international Labour Events 305 - Diocletian and Maximian retire from the office of Roman Emperor. The 8-hour day movement or 40-hour week movement (aka the Short-time movement) had its origins in the Industrial Revolution in Britain, where May Day in this regard is called International Workers' Day, or Labour Day. International Workers' Day (a name used interchangeably with May Day) is a celebration of the social and economic achievements of the international Labour Labour Day is an annual Holiday celebrated all over the world that resulted from efforts of The idea for a "workers holiday" began in Australia in 1856. With the idea having spread around the world, the choice of May 1st became a commemoration by the Second International for the people involved in the 1886 Haymarket affair. The Second International (1889-1916 was an organization of socialist and labour parties formed in Paris on July 14, 1889. 
The Haymarket affair occurred during the course of a three-day general strike in Chicago, Illinois that involved common laborers, artisans, merchants, and immigrants. A general strike is a Strike action by a critical mass of the labour force in a city region or country Chicago (ʃɪˈkɑːgoʊ is the largest City by population in the state of Illinois and the American Midwest of the United States.  Following an incident in which police opened fire and killed four strikers at the McCormick Harvesting Machine Co. plant, a rally was called for the following day at Haymarket Square. Cyrus Hall McCormick Sr ( February 15 1809 &ndash May 13 1884) of Rockbridge County Virginia was an American The event remained peaceful, yet towards the end of the rally, as police moved in to disperse the event, an unknown assailant threw a bomb into the crowd of police. The bomb and resulting police riot left at least a dozen people dead, including seven policemen. A police riot is a term used for the wrongful disproportionate unlawful, and illegitimate use of force by a group of Police against a group of Civilians  A sensational show trial ensued in which eight defendants were openly tried for their political beliefs, and not necessarily for any involvement in the bombing. The term show trial is a pejorative description of a type of highly Public trial.  The trial lead to the eventual public hanging of four anarchists. Capital punishment, the death penalty or execution, is the Killing of a person by judicial process as Punishment.  The Haymarket incident was a source of outrage from people around the globe. In the following years, memory of the "Haymarket martyrs" was remembered with various May Day job actions and demonstrations. 
As such, May Day has become an international celebration of the social and economic achievements of the labour movement. The labour movement or labor movement is a broad term for the development of a collective organization of working people, to campaign in their own interest for better Although May Day received its inspiration from the United States, the U. S. Congress designated May 1 as Loyalty Day in 1958 due to the day's appropriation by the Soviet Union. Events 305 - Diocletian and Maximian retire from the office of Roman Emperor. Loyalty Day is observed on May 1 in the United States. It is a day set aside for the reaffirmation of loyalty to the United States and for the recognition of the The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR was a constitutionally Socialist state that existed in Eurasia from 1922 to 1991  Alternatively Labor Day traditionally occurs sometime in September in the United States. Labor Day is a United States Federal holiday observed on the first Monday in September People often use May Day as a day for political protest, such as the million people who demonstrated against far-right candidate Jean-Marie Le Pen in France, or as a day for protest against government actions, such as pro-immigrant rallies across the United States. Jean-Marie Le Pen (born June 20, 1928, La Trinité-sur-Mer, Brittany, France) is a French far-right Nationalist This article is about the country For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic France topics. 
May Day marks the end of the uncomfortable winter half of the year in the Northern hemisphere, and it has traditionally been an occasion for popular and often raucous celebrations, regardless of the locally prevalent political or religious establishment. Winter is one of the four Seasons of Temperate zones Calculated astronomically, it begins on the Solstice and ends on the Equinox Northern Hemisphere is the half of a Planet that is North of the Equator —the word hemisphere literally means 'half ball'
As Europe became Christianized the pagan holidays lost their religious character, They either morphed into popular secular celebrations, as with May Day, or were replaced by new Christian holidays as with Christmas, Easter, and All Saint's Day. Paganism (from Latin paganus, meaning "country dweller rustic" is a word used to refer to various religions and religious beliefs from across the world A Christian is a person who adheres to Christianity, a monotheistic Religion centered on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth Easter ( Greek: Πάσχα Pascha or Pasxa) is the most important religious feast in the Christian Liturgical year. For the British girl group see All Saints (band. All Saints' Day (also called All Hallows or Hallowmas) often In the start of the twenty-first century, many neopagans began reconstructing the old traditions and celebrating May Day as a pagan religious festival again. Neopaganism or Neo-Paganism is an Umbrella term used to identify a wide variety of modern religious movements particularly those influenced by historical
Roodmas was an explicitly Christian Mass celebrated in England at midnight on May 1, presumably to diminish the popularity of traditional Walpurgis Night celebrations. Roodmas (from Old English 'rood' rod cross and 'mas' mass is an archaic English word meaning "Mass of the Cross" A Christian is a person who adheres to Christianity, a monotheistic Religion centered on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth Mass is a fundamental concept in Physics, roughly corresponding to the Intuitive idea of how much Matter there is in an object Midnight is literally "the middle of the night" In most systems it is when one day ends and the next begins when the date changes Events 305 - Diocletian and Maximian retire from the office of Roman Emperor. Walpurgis Night is a traditional religious holiday (celebrated by Pagans Roman Catholics and Satanists ref> About the Church of Satan alike celebrated
Traditional English May Day rites and celebrations include Morris dancing, crowning a May Queen and celebrations involving a Maypole. A rite is an established ceremonious usually Religious act or Process art. A party is a Social gathering for Celebration and Recreation. A morris dance is a form of English Folk dance usually accompanied by music The May Queen or Queen of May is a term which has two distinct but related meanings as a mythical figure and as a holiday Personification. The maypole is a tall wooden pole (traditionally of Maple ( Acer) hawthorn or Birch) sometimes erected with several long coloured Much of this tradition derive from the pagan Anglo-Saxon customs held during "Þrimilci-mōnaþ" (the Old English name for the month of May meaning Month of Three Milkings). Anglo-Saxon paganism refers to the Migration Period religion practiced by the English in 5th to 7th century England. The Germanic calendars were the regional agricultural Almanacs used amongst the Germanic peoples prior to the adoption of the Julian and later the Gregorian
May Day has been a traditional day of festivities throughout the centuries. With Christianity came agricultural feasts like Plough Sunday (the first Sunday in January), Rogationtide, Harvest Festival and May Day. It is most associated with towns and villages celebrating springtime fertility and revelry with village fetes and community gatherings. Fertility is the natural capability of giving life As a measure "Fertility Rate" is the number of children born per couple person or population Since May 1st is the Feast of St Philip & St James, they became the patron Saints of workers. Seeding has been completed by this date and it was convenient to give farm labourers a day off. Perhaps the most significant of the traditions is the Maypole, around which traditional dancers circle with ribbons. The maypole is a tall wooden pole (traditionally of Maple ( Acer) hawthorn or Birch) sometimes erected with several long coloured
The May Day Bank Holiday was traditionally the only one to affect the state school calendar, although new arrangements in some areas to even out the length of school terms mean that the Good Friday and Easter Monday Bank Holidays, which vary from year to year, may also fall during term time. A bank holiday is a Public holiday in the United Kingdom and also in the Republic of Ireland. State school is an expression used in Australia, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom to distinguish schools provided by the government from privately An academic term is a division of an academic year the time during which a School, College or University holds classes Good Friday, also called Holy Friday or Great Friday, is the Friday preceding Easter Sunday ("Pascha" Easter Monday is the day after Easter Sunday and is celebrated as a Holiday in some largely Christian cultures especially Roman Catholic In Christianity, a moveable feast or movable feast is a holy day &mdash a Feast day or a Fast day &mdash whose date is not fixed to a
Also, 1 May 1707 was the day the Act of Union came into effect, joining England and Scotland to form the Kingdom of Great Britain. Events 305 - Diocletian and Maximian retire from the office of Roman Emperor. Year 1707 ( MDCCVII) was a Common year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar of the Gregorian calendar (or a The Acts of Union were a pair of Parliamentary Acts passed during 1706 and 1707 by the Parliament of England and the Parliament of Scotland to put into England is a Country which is part of the United Kingdom. Its inhabitants account for more than 83% of the total UK population whilst its mainland Scotland ( Gaelic: Alba) is a Country in northwest Europethat occupies the northern third of the island of Great Britain. The Kingdom of Great Britain, also known as the United Kingdom of Great Britain, was a State in northwest Europe, in existence from 1707 to 1800
In Oxford, it is traditional for revellers to gather below Magdalen College tower to listen to the college's choir for what is called May Morning. Oxford is currently bidding for the 2010 Wikimania Conference Oxford () is a city, and the County town of Oxfordshire, Magdalen College redirects here see also Magdalene College Cambridge Magdalen College (ˈmɔːdlɨn "maudlin" is one of the constituent May Morning is an annual event in Oxford, England, on May Day ( 1 May) It is then thought to be traditional for some students to jump off Magdalen Bridge into the River Cherwell. Magdalen Bridge (ˈmɔːdlɨn "maudlin" spans the divided stream of the River Cherwell just to the east of the City of Oxford, and next to Magdalen The River Cherwell ( IPA /ˈtʃɑːwɛl/ is a river which flows through the Midlands of England. However this has actually only been fashionable since the 1970s. In recent years the bridge has been closed on 1 May to prevent people from jumping, as the water under the bridge is only 2 feet (61 cm) deep and jumping from the bridge has resulted in serious injury in the past yet there are still students who insist on climb the barriers and leaping into the water, causing injury. 
Maydayrun is an annual event held in England among countries that celebrate their bank holidays on the first Monday in May. It is also referred to as "MayDay Run" or "May Day Run". The event involves thousands of motorbikes taking a 55-mile (89 km) trip from the south of London (Locksbottom, Farnborough, Kent) to Hastings Seafront (Hastings, East Sussex). The event has been taking place for almost 30 years now and has grown in interest from around the country, both commercially and publicly. The event is not officially organised; the police only manage the traffic, while volunteers manage the parking.
Hastings fills up with tourists and bikes by about 11 AM, and the A21 from Kent to East Sussex is the road the bikers travel. However, this road should be avoided if traveling in a car.
A good example of more traditional May Day festivities is still witnessed in Whitstable, Kent where the Jack in the Green festival was revived in 1976 and continues to lead an annual procession of morris dancers through the town on the May Bank Holiday. A morris dance is a form of English Folk dance usually accompanied by music A separate revival occurred in Hastings in 1983 and has become a major event in the town calendar. Padstow also holds its annual 'Obby 'Oss festival. Padstow (Lannwedhenek is a small town its great Civil parish and cargo port on the north coast of Cornwall, England, United Kingdom Padstow, in Cornwall, UK is internationally famous for its traditional ' Obby 'Oss day (dialect for Hobby Horse) A traditional Sweeps Festival is performed over the May bank holiday in Rochester, Kent where the Jack In the Green is woken at dawn on the 1st of May by Morris dancers. Rochester is a town in Kent, England. It is located within the Unitary authority area of Medway and is at the lowest bridging point of the A Jack in the Green (also Jack in the green, Jack-in-the-green, Jack i' the Green, Jack o' the Green etc is a participant in traditional
Padstow in Cornwall holds its annual 'Obby-Oss' day of festivities. Padstow (Lannwedhenek is a small town its great Civil parish and cargo port on the north coast of Cornwall, England, United Kingdom Cornwall ( Kernow ˈkɛɹnɔʊ is the most southwesterly county of England, on the Peninsula that lies to the west of the River Tamar Padstow, in Cornwall, UK is internationally famous for its traditional ' Obby 'Oss day (dialect for Hobby Horse) This is believed to be one of the oldest fertility rites in the UK; revellers dance with the Oss through the streets of the town and even through the private gardens of the citizens, accompanied by accordion players and followers dressed in white with red or blue sashes who sing the traditional 'May Day' song. The whole town is decorated with springtime greenery, and every year thousands of onlookers attend. Prior to the 19th century distinctive May day celebrations were widespread throughout West Cornwall and have recently been revived in St. Ives and in 2008 will be revived in Penzance. The West Cornwall May Day celebrations are an example of folk practices found in the Western part of Cornwall, United Kingdom associated with the coming of spring St Ives (Porth Ia is a seaside town, Civil parish and port in the Penwith district of Cornwall, England, United Kingdom Penzance (Pensans also Penzans, IPA: /pɛnˈzæns/ is a town Civil parish, and Port in the Penwith district of Cornwall
Kingsand, Cawsand and Millbrook in Cornwall celebrate Black Prince Day on the May Day bank holiday. Kingsand and Cawsand are twin villages on the Rame Peninsula located in South East Cornwall, United Kingdom, across the sound from Cawsand (Porthbugh is a small village overlooking Plymouth Sound in Cornwall, England, United Kingdom. A model of the ship The Black Prince is covered in flowers and is taken in procession from the Quay at Millbrook to the beach at Cawsand where it is cast adrift. The houses in the villages are decorated with flowers and people traditionally wear red and white clothes. There are further celebrations in Cawsand Square with Morris dancing and May pole dancing. A morris dance is a form of English Folk dance usually accompanied by music The maypole is a tall wooden pole (traditionally of Maple ( Acer) hawthorn or Birch) sometimes erected with several long coloured
St Andrews has a similar student tradition — some of the students gather on the beach late on April 30 and run into the North Sea at sunrise on the 1st, occasionally naked. The University of St Andrews is the oldest University in Scotland and third oldest in the English-speaking world, having been founded between Events 313 - Roman emperor Licinius unifies the entire Eastern Roman Empire under his rule The North Sea is a marginal, Epeiric sea of the Atlantic Ocean on the European Continental shelf. This is accompanied by torchlit processions and much elated celebration.
Both Edinburgh and Glasgow organize Mayday festivals and rallies. Edinburgh ( ˈɛdɪnb(ərə Dùn Èideann) is the Capital of Scotland and is its second largest city after Glasgow. Glasgow (ˈglæzgoʊ is the largest city in Scotland and third most populous in the United Kingdom In Edinburgh, the Beltane Fire Festival is held on the evening of May eve and into the early hours of May Day on the city's Calton Hill. Edinburgh ( ˈɛdɪnb(ərə Dùn Èideann) is the Capital of Scotland and is its second largest city after Glasgow. Beltane Fire Festival is an annual participatory arts event and ritual drama held on April 30 on Calton Hill in Edinburgh.
On May 1st, 1561, French King Charles IX of France received a lily of the valley as a lucky charm. Charles IX (27 June 1550 &ndash 30 May 1574 born Charles-Maximilien, was King of France, ruling from 1560 until his death Convallaria majalis, commonly known as the Lily of the Valley or Lily-of-the-Valley, is the only species in the genus Convallaria He decided to offer a lily of the valley each year to the ladies of the court. Convallaria majalis, commonly known as the Lily of the Valley or Lily-of-the-Valley, is the only species in the genus Convallaria At the beginning of the 20th century, it became custom on the 1st of May, to give a sprig of lily of the valley, a symbol of springtime. The government permits individuals and workers' organisations to sell them free of taxation. It is also traditional for the lady receiving the spray of lilly of valley to give a kiss in return.
In rural regions of Germany, especially the Harz Mountains, Walpurgisnacht celebrations of Pagan origin are traditionally held on the night before May Day, including bonfires and the wrapping of maypoles, and young people use this opportunity to party, while the day itself is used by many families to get some fresh air. The Harz is a mountain range in central Germany It is the highest mountain chain in northern Germany occupying parts of the German states of Lower Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt Walpurgis Night is a traditional religious holiday (celebrated by Pagans Roman Catholics and Satanists ref> About the Church of Satan alike celebrated See also Campfire. bonfire is a large controlled outdoor Fire. The maypole is a tall wooden pole (traditionally of Maple ( Acer) hawthorn or Birch) sometimes erected with several long coloured Motto: "Tanz in den Mai!" ("Dance into May!"). In the Rhineland, a region in the western part of Germany, May 1 is also celebrated by the delivery of a tree covered in streamers to the house of a girl the night before. Events 305 - Diocletian and Maximian retire from the office of Roman Emperor. The tree is typically from a love interest, though a tree wrapped only in white streamers is a sign of dislike. On leap years, it is the responsibility of the females to place the maypole, though the males are still allowed and encouraged to do so. A leap year (or intercalary year) is a year containing one or more extra days (or in the case of Lunisolar calendars an extra month in order to keep the
Berlin, with a population of 3. 4 million people, is a collection of mostly socially and politically liberal groups. These groups use Mayday to protest and bring attention to social, political and environmental causes. These groups clash with the conservative groups on Mayday.
In Hawaii, May Day is also known as Lei Day, and is normally set aside as a day to celebrate island culture in general and native Hawaiian culture in particular. The State of Hawaii ( or həˈwaɪʔiː Hawaiian: Mokuāina o Hawaii) is a state in the United States located on an Archipelago in the Lei is a Hawaiian word for a garland or wreath More loosely defined a lei is any series of objects strung together with the intent to be worn While it was invented by a poet and a local newspaper columnist in the 1920s, it has since been adopted by state and local government as well as by the residents, and has taken on a sense of general spring celebration there. The first Lei Day was proposed in 1927 in Honolulu. Leonard "Red" and Ruth Hawk composed "May Day is Lei Day in Hawai'i," the traditional holiday song. Lei is a Hawaiian word for a garland or wreath More loosely defined a lei is any series of objects strung together with the intent to be worn Originally it was a contemporary fox trot, later rearranged as the Hawaiian hula song performed today. Hula (ˈhuːlə is a dance form accompanied by chant or song It was developed in the Hawaiian Islands by the Polynesians who originally settled there
May Day was also celebrated by some early European settlers of the American continent. The Americas are the lands of the Western hemisphere or New World, consisting of the Continents of North America and South America In some parts of the United States, May Baskets are made. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the These baskets are small and usually filled with flowers or treats and left at someone's doorstep. When you ring the bell, you are supposed to run away. The person receiving the basket would try to catch the person running away. If they caught the person, a kiss was to be exchanged.
Modern May Day ceremonies in the U. S. vary greatly from region to region and many unite both the holiday's "Green Root" (pagan) and "Red Root" (labor) traditions. Among the largest is the May Day Parade and Pageant created by In the Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theatre, an event that has happened every year since 1974 in Minneapolis and now attracts some 35,000 people. In the Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theatre (also known as Heart of the Beast or HOBT) is a puppet company from Minneapolis, Minnesota