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New Year's traditions

Updated: Sep 30, 2011 11:00 AM EDT
© Creatas/Creatas Images/Thinkstock © Creatas/Creatas Images/Thinkstock


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Baby New Year.

The use of an image of a baby to represent the new year is thought to have originated in Greece around 600 BC. The early Greeks and Egyptians used the baby as a symbol of rebirth.

New Year's Eve Party.

The celebration of the first few minutes of the new year comes from the belief that your luck in the coming year could be affected by your actions and what you eat on the first day of that year. This is why it became common to celebrate the countdown to New Year's Day among family and friends and the traditional kiss at midnight was born.

Party Horns at Midnight.

Historically, people have believed that loud noises could be used to drive away evil spirits. So it became custom to kick off the new year by blowing horns and shouting to drive away bad spirits from the new year. 

Making "New Year Resolutions."

This tradition dates back to the early Babylonians. While we typically "turn over a new leaf," this tradition in the past meant to pay up one's debts.

Singing "Auld Lang Syne."

This song is used to ring in the new year in most English-speaking countries. The song is an old Scottish tune believed to be written by Robert Burns in the 1700's. It's name means "the good old days."

The Tournament of Roses Parade.

This event dates back to 1886 when members of the Valley Hunt Club decorated their carriages with flowers to celebrate the ripening of the orange crop in California. 

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