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The modern Mother's Day began in the United States, at the initiative of Anna Jarvis in the early 20th century. It is not directly related to the many traditional celebrations of mothers and motherhood that have existed throughout the world over thousands of years, such as the Greek cult to Cybele, the mother god Rhea, the Roman festival of Hilaria, or the Christian Laetare Sunday celebration (associated with the image of Mother Church). However, in some countries, Mother's Day is still synonymous with these older traditions.

The American version of Mother's Day has been criticized for having become too commercialized

Founder Jarvis herself regretted this commercialism and expressed that this was never her intention. In response, Constance Adelaide Smith successfully advocated for Mothering Sunday as a commemoration of a broader definition of motherhood in many other parts of the English-speaking world, according to Wikipedia.


While the United States holiday was adopted by some other countries, existing celebrations, held on different dates, honoring motherhood have become described as "Mother's Day", such as Mothering Sunday in the United or, in Greece, the Eastern Orthodox celebration of the presentation of Jesus Christ to the temple (2 February of Julian Calendar). Both the secular and religious Mother's Day are present in Greece. Mothering Sunday is often referred to as "Mother's Day" even though it is an unrelated celebration.

Dates around the world

In some countries, the date adopted is one significant to the majority religion, such as Virgin Mary Day in Catholic countries. Other countries selected a date with historical significance. For example, Bolivia's Mother's Day is a fixed date, remembering a battle in which women participated to defend their children. See the "International history and tradition" section for the complete list.


Some countries, such as Russia, celebrated International Women's Day instead of Mother's Day or simply celebrate both holidays, which is the custom in Ukraine. Kyrgyzstan has recently introduced Mother's Day, but "year on year International Women's Day is certainly increasing in status".

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