April 1, 2023: When should you stop joking? Rules explained

You’d be a fool not to follow this rule (Picture: Getty)

ahhh, April Fool’s Day. A much needed time for jokes, jokes and general madness.

But it’s kind of hard to take part in all the antics when you’re busy all day at work and don’t have time to prank your family, friends or loved ones.

Many postpone their jokes until the evening for this reason, and some even get ahead of themselves and make up their jokes for April 1st.

April Fools’ Day always brings a good laugh – but when should the jokes end?

When should you stop telling April Fools jokes?

Traditionally, you can only tell April Fools jokes until noon on April 1.

After that time you are supposed to hold your hands up and be honest about your various jokes.

And the April Fools’ Day rules bear this out.

Dating back to at least the 18th century, the rules say you can’t put off your jokes until noon.

Anyone who plays pranks in the afternoon is considered the fool themselves – because they do not know the correct rules or have not properly acknowledged them.

Interestingly, no one actually knows why there is a prank deadline for April Fools’ Day.

Where does April 1 come from?

It’s unclear where April Fools Day comes from, but there are many theories around this.

A popular theory is that it started in 1582, when France switched from the Julian calendar to the Gregorian calendar, moving New Year’s Day from April 1 to January 1.

April Fools has been around for hundreds of years (Picture: Getty)

Many people still called in the New Year on April 1 because they were unaware of the calendar change, and these people were laughed at and made fun of for being “fools.”

Other people believe that marks the day when Mother Nature plays tricks on us, as the weather tends to be very unpredictable this time of year.

Is April Fools Day celebrated in other countries?

The UK isn’t the only country making fun of people on April 1 many other countries share this tradition.

In Ireland it was a longstanding April Fools tradition to give an important letter to a chosen ‘fool’ and ask them to give it to a particular person.

That person would then read the letter and ask the fool to pass it on to someone else, and so on.

When opened, the letter would read ‘send the fool on’.

In Italy, France and other French speaking areas the day is called April Fish and a common joke is to put a paper fish on someone’s back without them noticing.

Fish on your back? You are a French fool (Picture: Getty)

In Poland, April Fools Day is taken very seriously and news outlets often collaborate and run the same false stories to make them even more believable.

MORE : The best April Fools’ Day pranks you can do via text, Facebook or WhatsApp

MORE : Is April 1 international? How it is celebrated all over the world

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