Mothers Day is celebrated world over, albeit on different days of the year. That said, whether March or May, Mothers Day is dedicated to honouring the women who give or have given so much to their families without ever asking anything in return. But did you know…
Mothers Day is not a fixed day because it is always the fourth Sunday in Lent (which lasts from Ash Wednesday to Eater Sunday). In the UK, Mothers Day has been celebrated on the fourth Sunday in Lent since at least the 16th century, when it was Christian practice to visit one’s mother church annually.
Children as young as eight years old used to go off to learn a trade and usually not see their family for most of the year, during Lent, before preparations for the Eater feasts, the young people would be allowed to return to their homes and families for the weekend. This became known as “going a mothering”.
The Sunday they returned home, the whole family would go to Church and present their mothers with gifts of flowers (from surrounding meadows) or small gifts from merchants. This was also a day for feasting when all restriction of Lent was put aside for the day… and this feast became known as Mothering Sunday.
In 1912, Anna Jarvis trademarked the phrase “Mothers Day”. Since then, Carnations have come to represent Mothers Day since they were delivered at one of its first celebrations by its founder. Anna Jarvis delivered a single white carnation to every person which was a symbol of the purity of a mothers love.
In 1948 Anna Jarvis herself was arrested for disturbing the peace whilst protesting against the commercialisation of Mothers Day and she finally said that she wished she had never started the day because it became so out of control.
By the 19th century, the holiday had almost completely died out in the UK. However it came to be celebrated again after World War II, when American servicemen brought the custom and commercial enterprises and used it as an occasion for sales.
Mother’s Day is widely reported as the peak day of the year for long distance telephone calls. US Retailers report that Mother’s Day is the second highest gift-giving holiday (Christmas is the highest).
Research in 2006 concluded that 35% of the adult population chose to send flowers or plants to their mothers for Mothers Day – the most popular gift, above chocolates and jewellery, by some margin. According to data collected by the Flowers and Plant Association, 3.7 million bouquets were bought and sent for Mothers Day and Mothering Weekend during Mothers Day 2006. This number rose again in 2007.
Make this Mother’s Day special and join us at The Bull on 22nd March for a 3 course Carvery lunch, a glass of bucks fizz, entertainment by a Jazz band and we’ll also include a little gift for mum… in case you forget…
Written by Danielle Beukes, Meetings and Events Office Manager at The Bull