Sviatky v Británii (Festivals and Celebrations)

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  • Datum přidání: 06. února 2007
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Sviatky v Británii (Festivals and Celebrations)

Halloween
31st October - It's the day before All Saints' Day. The festival started in pre-Christian times. People believed that at Halloween the souls of the dead revisit the places where they once lived.
Children prepare their costumes and pumpkins. Normally the costumes depict witches, fairies, devils, monsters and other scary beings. Pumpkins are hallowed out and a face is cut into the pumpkins skin. Inside a candle is placed the iight of which shines out through the face. Such a pumpkin is called a Jack - 0 - Lantern. Children go ,,trick or treating" in their costumes. This is when they go from house to house performing a little song or rhyme for sweets.


Thanksgiving Day
In September 1620 a group of English people called the Pilgrim Fathers sailed from Plymouth, England across the Atlantic Ocean, in a ship called The Mayflower, to America. They went away from England because of their religion, and because they wanted land for their families. The pilgrims sailed- for sixty six dangerous days -across the Atlantic Ocean,
When they arrived, they called their new home New England, but they were not the first people to live there. The Indians were first. Sometimes the Pilgrims fought with the Indians but they also learned a lot from them. The Indians showed them how to grow and cook new kinds of fruit and vegetables. The first winter was difficult. Many of the Pilgrims died because it was very cold and they had little food. In the spring they started to grow food, helped by some friendly Indians, and in the autumn of 1621 they celebrated their first harvest.
The pilgrims wanted to give thanks, not only for the harvest, but for their new home, new life and new friends. The date of Thanksgiving Day in the USA has changed three times, but it is now the fourth Thursday in November. Most Americans have dinner with their families. The traditional dinner is turkey and pumpkin pie.


Guy Fawkes Night
5th November- It's Guy Fawkes Night (Bonfire Night). In 1605 King James I. was on the throne. As a Protestant, he was very unpopular with Roman Catholic. Some of them planned to blow up the Houses of Parliament on 5th November of that year when the king was going to open Parliament. Under the House of Lords they had stored thirty - six barrels of gun powder which were to be exploded by a man called Guy Fawkes. However one of the plotters told someone and Fawkes was discovered, arrested and later hanged.

Since then, the British traditionally celebrate this day.
Children make a dummy, made of straw and old clothes. Then they parade this around streets and ask passers- by for a penny for the guy, this is often twenty, fifty pence or as much as a pound. On the night itself, there are ,,bonfire parties" throughout the country, at which the ,,guy" is burnt. Some people cook sausages on sticks at the fire. Throughout the evening, there are many fireworks set off..

Christmas
Christmas - people start to get ready for Christmas in late October or early November. Shop - keepers decorate their shops with lights, trees and other decorations. In the middle of December, most families buy Christmas trees, put them inside the house, and put colourful decorations on them.
The Christmas holiday begins on 24 December: Christmas Eve. People often stop work early and have a drink together and children leave a stocking for Santa Claus when go to bed. Santa Claus brings present for children during the night. In Britain he is usually called Father Christmas. If the house has a fireplace, the children sometimes leave their stockings by the fire because Santa Claus comes down the chimney.

Christmas Day 25 December is a holiday. Children usually wake up very early. They look in their stockings to see what Santa put there for them. After breakfast they open their other presents around the tree.
Christmas dinner is in the afternoon and the biggest meal of the day. Before they start to eat, people pull crackers. The crackers make a loud noise, and have a 'small game and paper- party hat inside. Dinner is usually turkey with lots of winter vegetables and then hot mince pies or a Christmas pudding. At three o'clock many people in Britain turn their televisions on because the Queen says' Happy Christmas' to everyone.

Boxing Day 26 December is also a holiday in Britain, but many shops now open on this day. In the nineteenth century, rich people gave boxes to their workers with Christmas presents inside. Now it is another day for eating, drinking and watching television at home, or going out to watch some sport.

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