Mothers Day is only about 100 years old. It started in the USA in the early 1900s. However, it draws on far older traditions.
The earliest history of Mothers’ Day dates back to the ancient annual spring festival the Greeks dedicated to maternal goddesses. The Greeks used the occasion to honour Rhea, wife of Cronus and the mother of many deities of Greek mythology.
2. Mothers Day and Mothering Sunday
Mother’s Day in the UK is traditionally celebrated on the 4th Sunday of Lent, as a Christian holiday. However, Mother’s Day is not actually related to the Christian Mothering Sunday celebration.
Most Sundays in the year churchgoers in England worship at their nearest parish or ‘daughter church’.
Centuries ago it was considered important for people to return to their home or ‘mother’ church once a year. So each year in the middle of Lent, everyone would visit their ‘mother’ church – the main church or cathedral of the area.
Inevitably the return to the ‘mother’ church became an occasion for family reunions when children who were working away returned home. (It was quite common in those days for children to leave home for work once they were ten years old.)
And most historians think that it was the return to the ‘Mother’ church which led to the tradition of children, particularly those working as domestic servants, or as apprentices, being given the day off to visit their mother and family.
As they walked along the country lanes, children would pick wild flowers or violets to take to church or give to their mother as a small gift.
3. 69 Babies
The greatest officially recorded number of children born to one mother is 69, to the wife of Feodor Vassilyev (b. 1707–c.1782), a peasant from Shuya, Russia. In 27 confinements she gave birth to 16 pairs of twins, seven sets of triplets and four sets of quadruplets.
4. 73 year-old mum
Mrs Steve Pace, of Rose Hill, Virginia, is reported have given birth to her 17th child, a boy, in 1939, at the extreme age of 73. She was then already mother of 16 children, the last of whom was born twenty-three years earlier.
5. John Lennon’s Song
John Lennon’s song “Mother” first released on his 1970 album “John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band”. The song is a tribute to his own mother, Julia, who was killed in a car accident on 15 July 1958, before the Beatles became famous.
6. Traditional Gifts
Mother’s Day gifts are a tradition to show Mum how much she’s valued and appreciated. Traditionally Mother’s Day gifts included flowers and a Simnel cake. The flowers were picked by the workers on the way home from work for a day with their mum; they’d pick wild flowers from the country lanes. It is still a tradition today to spoil mum with a stunning colourful bouquet of flowers, as well as more modern gifts such as perfume, clothes or jewellery.
6 Mothers Day Jewellery Gifts
Your mum will love one of these fantastic gifts that show her how much she’s loved and appreciated.