Cultures all over the world celebrate during the festive period and into the New Year, with 1st January serving as a public holiday for many countries. It is a time of festivity and over-indulgence, but also a time for reflection, resolutions, and new starts. Some of the most common New Year's resolutions involve losing weight, eating healthy, exercising more, and stopping drinking or smoking—and with this in mind, we've put a spotlight on the traditions and tribulations of the New Year. From quotations, dictionaries, and companions, to the latest blogs and discussions, see what you will discover with Oxford Reference...
"Now is the accepted time to make your regular annual good resolutions. Next week you can begin paving hell with them as usual." — Mark Twain, 1835-1910, American writer
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"To get back my youth I would do anything in the world, except take exercise, get up early, or be respectable." — Oscar Wilde, 1854-1900, Irish dramatist and poet
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"We drink one another's healths, and spoil our own." — Jerome K. Jerome, 1859-1927, English writer
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Fake facts and favourite sayings
Top trivia to impress at your next festive celebration...
"Fake facts, or perhaps more accurately misunderstandings, have been around in the world of quotations for a long time. Often, when people see a line they like, they simply copy it and repeat it. Take, for instance: “At the touch of love, everyone becomes a poet.” If (at the time of reading), the words were attributed to the Greek philosopher Plato, this would be repeated too. But in fact it was not Plato who originally said it."
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The origins of dance styles
Brush up on your ballroom abilities in time for January...
"There is an amazing variety of types, styles, and genres of dancing – from street to disco, to folk dancing and ballroom. Some are recent inventions, stemming from social and political changes, whilst others have origins as old as civilisation itself. Do you know your Jive from your Jazz, your Salsa from your Samba? Read on to discover the surprisingly controversial origins of the Waltz, and the dark history of the American Tango."
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