Holidays in Britain / Праздники в Великобритании

There are vet many Holidays in Britain. The most famous of them are Christmas and Easter. Christmas is a holiday that has practically no religious significance for the majority of the population. It is perhaps, the most colourful holiday of the year. The decorated Christmas tree first appeared in England, when Queen Victoria used it. This was a German tradition, and the Queens husband, Prince Albert, who was German, brought this tradition to England. The branches of the tree are usually decorated lights, small toys and candies.

Easter is celebrated as a religious festival and as the start of spring, when a new life comes to the earth. In England it is the time for giving and receiving presents. The presents traditionally have a shape of eggs, baby-rabbits and spring flowers.

There are also some funny holidays. All Fools' Day is celebrated on the 1st April. By tradition it is the day of jokes. People make each other believe something that is untrue. Children sometimes decide to tell their parents that the house is on fire, or that some other disaster has happened. Pancake Race on Shrove Tuesday is another funny tradition. Shrove Tuesday is the day of pancakes. Everyone has them for dinner on that day, people race with them and fight for them. A pancake is tossed into the air, the one who has the biggest piece is the winner.

One more interesting holiday is Halloween. This holiday is celebrated on October 31 st England, Scotland and Wales. According to the belief all kinds of ghosts wander on this night. Light keeps away these spirits. People make lanterns of pumpkins and organize a party for friends. This is really a young people's holiday. Guy Fawkes Day is also celebrated with bonfires and rockets. You will see small groups of boys and girls, who go along the streets and ask for a «penny for the Guy». But the most joyful holiday is, perhaps, the New Year's Eve. It is the night of singing and dancing. Children go singing from door to door, and receive sweets and presents.

Словарь

significance — значение

the majority — большинство

fire — пожар

a ghost — привидение

a pumpkin — тыква

Guy Fawkes Day — День Гая Фокса (5 ноября, годовщина раскрытия Порохового заговора; в этот день сжигают изображение Гая Фокса)