Running head: BIRTHDAY CELEBRATIONS
History of Birthday celebrations
Birthdays bring friends and family members together to celebrate their own on a date
marking the anniversary of their birth and a beginning of a year of the person’s life. But birthday
celebrations hold more meaning than that being (Emelianov, 2017). The celebrations continue to
change over time from what the ancient people experienced turning into what many people are
conversant with it the present times. The birthday tradition began many years ago and that what’s
the article is aimed at explaining.
Birthday celebrations began only after calendars were invented. The early civilization
used the phases of the moon or sun to keep track of time or seasons since their people did not
know any better. It was, therefore, challenging for people to keep track of their birth dates and
the celebrations could therefore not happen. Though people knew they were ageing, they did not
have the means to mark the important day in their lives. Ancient people then started discovering
they could moon cycles and paid closer attention to the changes in seasons that happened
repeatedly (Albon, 2015). The pattern could be followed easily since it had a way of recurrence.
Creativity played its part and the ancient people began marking the patterns and the seasons they
happened keenly. The discovery led to first calendars and made it easier for people to mark
important occasions like birthdays. People could now mark important dates for their
anniversaries and celebrate them throughout the years.
Birthday celebrations began with Egyptians. Bible scholar’s studies show that first
birthdays begun around 3,000 B.C.E. they refer the first celebration to have been that of Pharaoh.
While current celebrations mark the physical birth of a person to the world, the first birthdays to
the Pharaoh was set to mark their “birth” as a god. The ancient Egypt traditions crowned the
Pharaohs and considered them to have transformed into gods. The celebration made them
important and respected people in society. Some pagans such as the ancient Greeks also had
believed that every individual possessed a certain spirit that guided them from the moment of
birth into the world being (Emelianov, 2017). They believed that the spirit had powers of
keeping watch over the person and gave them the mystic relationship to God on the birthday the
person was born.
Birthday candles have their history on the Greeks. Greek culture respects Gods and
goddesses. There were many tribute and sacrifices made to lease the gods by the Greek cultures.
The lunar goddess, Artemis for example also received the sacrifices (Shoham, 2015). The Greeks
offered moon-shaped cakes decorated with lighting candled during the celebrations of the lunar
goddess. The candles were used to resemble the glowing lighting of the moon and symbolized
beauty. Candles were also a symbol of sending a signal prayer to the gods. The people could
blow out the candles as they made a wish in prayer and could believe that in so doing the
message could reach the gods.
First Birthday Celebrations
First birthday celebrations began as a way of protection. Later, the Greek traditions
adopted the celebrations of birthdays from the Egyptian “birth” of a god. Like many pagan
cultures in the world, the Greeks believed that days that marked major occasions such as birth
also welcomed evil spirits that would later haunt the individuals. Lighting candles was a way to
respond to the evil spirits since they represented light in the darkest situations. This was evidence
that birthday celebrations begun as a way of protection to the people (Shoham, 2015). Family
and friends could attend these occasions and gather around the individual, say good cheers, and
wish them well in attempts to protect them from any harm from the evil spirits. Gifts were also
given to the person celebrating the occasion to symbolize good cheers. They were also used to
keep away the evil spirits. Noisemakers were also essential in these celebrations as they were
believed to keep the evil spirits away.
The first physical birthday celebration began with the ancient Romans. They are believed
to have been the first community to celebrate the birth of a common human being (Emelianov,
2017). The celebrations by the Romans marked the first occasions where the civilization
celebrated the physical birth of a person in non-religious capacity. Roman citizens were known
to celebrate their birthdays wi...
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