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Tuesday, 11 November 2014

WHY DO MANY BRITISH PEOPLE WEAR A POPPY ON THEIR LAPEL IN NOVEMBER? IT'S REMEMBRANCE DAY (Updated November 2014)

Tower of London, November 2014

A poppy on a lapel

Remembrance Day – also known as Poppy Day, Armistice Day (the event it commemorates) or Veterans Day – is a day to commemorate the sacrifices of members of the armed forces and of civilians in times of war, specifically since the First World War. It is observed on 11 November to recall the end of World War I on that date in 1918. (Major hostilities of World War I were formally ended at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918 with the German signing of the Armistice.) The day was specifically dedicated by King George V, on 7 November 1919, to the observance of members of the armed forces who were killed during war.
The poppy's significance to Remembrance Day is a result of Canadian military physician John McCrae's poem In Flanders Fields. The poppy emblem was chosen because of the poppies that bloomed across some of the worst battlefields of Flanders in World War I, their red colour an appropriate symbol for the bloodshed of trench warfare. An American YMCA Overseas War Secretaries employee, Moina Michael, was inspired to make 25 silk poppies based on McCrae's poem, which she distributed to attendees of the YMCA Overseas War Secretaries' Conference. She then made an effort to have the poppy adopted as a national symbol of remembrance, and succeeded in having the National American Legion Conference adopt it two years later. At this conference, a Frenchwoman, Anna E. Guérin, was inspired to introduce the widely used artificial poppies given out today. In 1921 she sent her poppy sellers to England, where they were adopted as well as by veterans' groups in Canada, Australia and New Zealand. Some people choose to wear white poppies, which emphasises a desire for peaceful alternatives to military action.
The
Royal Canadian Legion suggests that poppies be worn on the left lapel, or as close to the heart as possible. In England, Wales, and Northern Ireland the poppies are paper representatives of the flat Earl Haig variety with a leaf, mounted on a plastic stem. Wearers require a separate pin to attach the poppy to their clothing. In Scotland the poppies are curled at the petals with no leaf.
Tower of London, November 2014: 888.246 poppies


Video: IN FLANDERS FIELDS poem:




Link to more info @ EnglishWithATwist:

Why Do We Celebrate Poppy Day?

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