The April Fools' Day Quiz

Staff

First off, what's the holiday really called?

You'd be surprised how many people excitedly yell "April's Fool!" upon completion of a prank.

What is one theory for the origin of April Fools' Day?

And we'll see why calendar confusion could make one a fool …

The calendar confusion came from …

Supposedly, those who didn't follow the new Gregorian calendar were made fun of for celebrating the new year in April, per the Julian calendar.

Some argue that the calendar interpretation isn't true. Why?

Although the French had a legal new year during Easter, most people always celebrated the new year on Jan. 1.

What is the French term for "April Fools' Day"?

<i>Bonne Poisson d'Avril, tout le monde!</i>

So what's a <i>poisson</i>?

Happy April Fish Day, everyone!

Huh? Why a fish, exactly?

Although fish being smelly seems like a good enough reason to make them a symbol for gullible folks.

OK, but what's a theory about where the fish came from?

Still doesn't quite explain why it's related to pranks.

What's a funny joke the French play on people on April 1?

They pin a paper fish to your clothes. Good one.

A professor at Boston University pranked the Associated Press by telling it that April Fools' Day started how?

The professor said his dad started the holiday. Remember to double check all statements when you're talking to a professor who studies the history of American humor.

Ancient Romans celebrated the holiday of Hilaria in late March. What was one of the fun things they did?

They wore costumes. The spring celebration marked the resurrection of Attis, a companion of the important Cybele.

What did the Scottish traditionally call April Fools' Day?

Hunt the gowk (or cuckoo bird) day, that is.

The Belfast Zoo is flooded with calls on April 1, asking for whom?

Callers ask for Mr. Albert Ross and Miss Ann Tellope, apparently.

What prank really made Irish people worry in 1965?

The government was probably unamused by The Irish Times' prank but not as panicked as the citizens.

What classic April 1, prank from the BBC had Brits hoping for an unusual harvest?

The joke was complete with film of farmers pulling noodles from trees.

Saddam Hussein's son Uday printed what April Fools' joke in a newspaper he owned?

His joke that the U.S. had lifted sanctions wasn't that funny.

Where is the first concrete reference to an April Fools' joke being played?

A Flemish writer talked about a April Fools' joke in 1561.

Indian culture celebrates Holi near April, as well. It's a day of general merriment and fun similar to April Fools' Day, but what also distinguishes it?

People throw colored powder. There's a lot of dancing and partying, too.

What magazine had a famous April Fools' hoax cover story in 1985?

George Plimpton wrote a magnificent piece in Sports Illustrated about an imaginary baseball pitcher.

Who pretended to buy the Liberty Bell as an April Fools' joke?

The Liberty Taco Bell would've been delicious.

What amazing hoax did one Alaska man pull off on April 1, 1974?

By dropping burning tires, kerosene and smoke bombs onto Mount Edgecumbe, a Sitka, Alaska, resident caused a bit of panic among residents.

What invention did Burger King claim on April 1, 1998?

All the condiments on the left-handed Whopper, Burger King claimed, were shifted 180 degrees for southpaws.

When did Google begin its tradition of April Fools' jokes?

The joke in 2000 involved asking users to simply think about what they wanted to search for.

What prank did Google pull in 2007?

Of course I didn't say, "hmm, maybe I should get hard copies of my emails" when I initially saw that obvious joke.

A 1698 London newsletter first recorded people falling for what April Fools' joke?

There were no lions. And there weren't for the (literally) hundreds of years the prank continued.

A 1998 satire piece by a physicist convinced some people that …

The article claimed Alabama was changing the value of pi. It was critical of the way evolution is debated.

Every year someone writes a detailed press release for a (nonexistent) April Fools' Day Parade in what city?

Since 1986 a prankster has written up press releases about a parade that doesn't happen.

National Public Radio published an April 1, piece online titled "Why Doesn't America Read Anymore?" What made it a joke?

Many commenters were outraged by the contents of the article … that they clearly hadn't read.

What event was no joke on April 1, 2012?

OK, it came within 143,000 miles (230,000 kilometers). A near miss by the standards of the cosmos.

Who made April Fools' Day a national holiday in America?

FDR made it a national holiday. April Fools'!

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Image: refer to hsw

About This Quiz

If you think you know everything there is to know about pranks and hoaxes, the joke just may be on you. Take this quiz to learn why the merrymaking day came to be, how it's celebrated in different places and some of the best pranks of all time.

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