23 November 2016

Thanksgiving Day, a day to say “thank-you”

thanksgiving day

This is one of the most widely celebrated festivals in the United States and has begun to take hold in other parts of the world as well: Thanksgiving Day is much more than just a family gathering with its typical turkey lunch.

Thanksgiving Day has ancient origins and on this day Catholic and pagan traditions are fused in a single will: to celebrate the end of the harvest and give thanks for the bounty of the land and more generally for everything good that has been received throughout the year.

 

Although these are the origins of the celebration, the roots for the Thanksgiving Day go back to the XVII century, to Plymouth, when the Pilgrim Fathers who travelled on board the Mayflower ordered all the families to gather together and thank the Lord for the excellent harvest. Even the native Americans took part in this first Thanksgiving lunch, in recognition of part they played in helping the Pilgrim fathers grow maize and farm the turkeys that, since then, have been the main course together with pumpkin, breads and sweet potatoes.

 

Today, Thanksgiving Day is a national holiday (and has been since 1863) and every year, on this date, the President-in-Office gives the traditional speech. During the day, many events and parades are held, as well as the religious ceremonies.