By: Seth Voty
Do you know what New Year’s resolutions are? A New Year’s Resolution is a promise made to yourself on New Year’s Eve to somehow make improvements in your life coming in the year ahead. Did you know the first recorded people to perform New Year’s Resolutions was the ancient Babylonians almost 4,000 years ago? Although, they didn’t start the New Year until sometime around March when the crops were planted. They celebrated a little differently than we do now; they started off by having a ceremony which lasted 11 days called the Akitu Festival. The activities were dedicated to the sun god Marduk, but they made promises to themselves to in order to get on the right side of the gods. They thought that this would help them start the New Year off right.
Although the traditional New Year’s Resolutions started as a religious practice, most New Year’s Resolutions today are more of a civil practice. Instead of people making this a religious practice today people focus their New Year’s Resolutions on making promises to themselves to improve themselves in some way or another. According to www.statisticbrain.com nearly 45% of Americans make New Year’s Resolutions to improve themselves, although only about 8% actually follow through with their resolution.
Did you also know that New Year’s wasn’t always on January 1st? It didn’t fall on the first until somewhere around 45 B.C when Julius Caesar decided to make a new and improved calendar adding two more months. He called it the “Julian calendar” closely resembling the modern day Gregorian calendar. As part of him making the new calendar he declared that January 1st would be the start of the New Year. For more information on New Year’s resolutions go to www.history.com.