Out With The Old, In With The New
Get ready to say goodbye to the old , hello to thenew! What’s the occasion ? The coming of the NewYear.
Many western cultures measure their days with thesolar calendar. Therefore, they observe 1 thecoming of the New Year on January 1. Cultures inAsia and the Middle East use other calendars, suchas the more ancient lunar calendar. They celebrate the New Year at other times. Events andrituals vary from country to country. But in each place, New Year celebrations are a big deal.
Most world cultures have been celebrating the New Year for centuries. The earliest New Yearcelebrations took place during spring or harvest time. With better weather ahead, or plenty offood to eat in winter, people naturally felt like having a party! As the days became longer and asnature renewed itself, people also felt like they could have a new start. Past disappointmentscould be forgotten. The New Year could bring better fortune , more opportunities and newchallenges. Such universal themes remain the same today.
New Year celebrations also involve having fun. The Hogmanay festival in Edinburgh, Scotland,features2 theater events, fireworks and dancing. During Hogmanay, Scots burn torches andbarrels of tar, an old practice for keeping evil spirits away. In Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, the beachbecomes the stage for a huge New Year party. During the day, thousands of people throwflowers into the sea for good luck. In the evening, they enjoy music concerts and fireworks.Everyone is supposed to wear white — the auspicious New Year color.
Some cultures have unusual New Year traditions. Italians throw old things out of their windowsat midnight, symbolizing the departure of the old. Mexicans fire guns into the air to ward offmisfortune. Danes jump off chairs exactly as the clock strikes midnight, so they can“jump”intothe New Year. Greek children leave their shoes by the fireplace on New Year’s Day. They hopeSaint Basil3, a popular Greek saint known for his kindness, will come and fill the shoes withgifts. In Vancouver, Canada, some people celebrate the New Year by jumping into the ocean .The water there is freezing cold! Therefore the event has been aptly named the Polar BearSwim4. As you might expect, most people come to watch the swimmers rather than swimthemselves
London, England, hosts an annual New Year’s Day parade that draws nearly a millionspectators. The largest parade in Europe , it features bands, floats and enormous balloons.These balloons are so huge that they tower over5 nearby buildings!
Ⅰ. Fill in the blanks with proper words :
1. Therefore, they_______ ( 庆祝) the coming of the New Year on January 1.
2. As the days became longer and as nature_______ ( 更新) itself, people also_______ ( 想要)they could have a new start.
3. Everyone is supposed to wear white — the _______( 吉祥的) New Year color.
4. London, England, hosts an annual New Year’s Day parade that draws nearly a million_______ ( 观众) .
5. The largest parade in Europe, it_______ ( 以……为特色) bands, floats and enormousballoons. These balloons are so huge that they_______ ( 高于) nearby buildings!
Ⅱ. Answer the following question in you own words:
Why did the earliest New Year celebrations take place during spring or harvest time?
Ⅰ. 1. observe 2. renewed / felt like 3. auspicious 4.spectators 5. features / tower over
Ⅱ. Because with better weather ahead, or plenty offood to eat in winter, people naturally felt like havinga party.
准备好辞旧迎新! 是什么大事呢? 是新年的来临!
许多西方国家以公历来计日。因此, 他们在1 月1 日庆祝新年的到来。亚洲和中东的 国家则使用其他的历法, 如比公历还要古老的阴历, 因而在其他时间庆祝新年。每个国家 的节日和习俗都不同。但是不论在何处, 新年的庆祝活动都非常隆重。
在世界绝大多数的文化里, 庆祝新年的传统已沿袭了好几百年。历史上最早的新年庆 典是在春天或收获的季节举行。由于天气渐渐转暖, 或是因为冬季食物充足, 人们自然要 庆贺一番。随着白天变长, 万象更新, 人们也觉得自己应该有个新的开始。往日的不快可 以抛之脑后, 新的一年会带来更好的运气、更多的机遇和新的挑战。这些共同的主题沿袭 至今。
新年庆典也包括开心享乐。苏格兰爱丁堡的除夕节庆以戏剧演出、焰火和舞蹈为主 题。在除夕夜, 苏格兰人会点燃火炬和一桶一桶的沥青, 这种传统做法是用来驱赶恶魔的。 在巴西的里约热内卢, 人们在海滩上举行大型新年晚会。白天, 数以万计的人们将鲜花抛 入海中祈求好运。傍晚时分, 他们观赏音乐会和焰火。每个人都身着白色的衣饰, 因为白 色是新年的吉祥色。
有些民族以他们独特的方式庆贺新年。在除夕午夜时分, 意大利人将旧的东西丢出窗 043 外 , 以此来象征除旧布新。墨西哥人则朝空中鸣枪, 以驱走厄运。当午夜的钟声敲响时, 丹 麦人会从椅子上跳起来, 意在“ 跃入”新年。在元旦时, 希腊的孩子们将鞋子留在壁炉旁。 他们期待圣· 巴西勒——— 一个和蔼仁慈、颇受欢迎的圣人——— 会现身, 在他们的鞋子里塞 满礼物。在加拿大的温哥华, 有人跳入冰冷彻骨的海水中, 以此来庆贺新年。因此, 这项活 动也有个很贴切的名字———“ 北极熊冬泳”。当然, 大部分人是来观看游泳的, 不会亲自下 水。
英国伦敦则举办一年一度的元旦游行, 这吸引将近一百万的观众参加。欧洲最 大的游 行都有乐队、花车和巨型气球。这些大气球比附近的建筑物还要高呢!