Thursday, February 02, 2012

The History of Groundhog Day

Do you know the history of Groundhog Day, like how it got started and how it developed itself into today’s version?

I did some extensive research on the subject – which means that I read today's page of Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader page-a-day Calendar: In old Europe on February the 2nd they celebrated Candlemas, which is the halfway point between the winter solstice and the spring equinox. The church clergymen lighted candles and la-de-da. Then the Germans altered the tradition to include a hedgehog. If the hedgehog sees its shadow there would be six more weeks of winter. Then many Europeans started migrating to the new world. A lot Germans settled in Pennsylvania. They wanted to continue Hedgehog Day but there were no hedgehogs. They substituted groundhogs. So, there you have it, the development of Groundhog Day.

Now, I don’t know if you are aware of it or not but some of the details have changed again. Now, on February the 2nd, the honorary groundhog must see, not his own shadow, but the above character.

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