Veterans Day

Veterans Day
November 11, a legal holiday in the U.S. in commemoration of the end of World Wars I and II and in honor of veterans of the armed services. Formerly, Armistice Day.
[‡1950-55, Amer.]

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U.S. holiday celebrated on November 11, honouring veterans of the U.S. armed forces and those killed in battle.

Originally called Armistice Day, it began as a commemoration of the ending of World War I on Nov. 11, 1918. After World War II it was recognized as a day to pay tribute to all service members, and in 1954 it was designated as Veterans Day. It is usually observed with parades, speeches, and flowers placed on military graves and memorials. The holiday is called Remembrance Day in Canada and Remembrance Sunday (on the Sunday nearest to November 11) in Britain.

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      in the United States, day (November 11) honouring veterans of the armed forces and those killed in the country's wars. The observance originated in 1921 as Armistice Day with the burial of the body of an unknown soldier from World War I at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia, and, at the same time, the burial of unknown soldiers at Westminster Abbey in London and at the Arc de Triomphe in Paris. November 11 became a national holiday in the United States in 1938. In 1954 the name was changed to Veterans Day to honour those who had served in all U.S. wars. Ceremonies are held each year at the Tomb of the Unknowns, and floral tributes are placed on the graves of servicemen and at memorials throughout the country. Naturalization ceremonies have come to be an important part of the day's activities.

      In Britain (United Kingdom), Canada, Australia, and France the day is observed in honour of the veterans of World Wars I and II. In Britain the second Sunday of November is observed as Remembrance Sunday, and in Canada November 11 is observed as Remembrance Day. In Britain and the Commonwealth countries and in countries of Europe, it is common to observe two minutes of silence at 11:00 AM on November 11, the time and date of the World War I armistice in 1918. Poppies have long been associated with World War I memorials through the poem "In Flanders Fields" by John McCrae, and in several countries paper poppies are sold to raise money for the support of veterans and are worn in the lapel as a sign of remembrance.

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Universalium. 2010.

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