Anzac Day

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Anzac Day occurs on 25 April. It commemorates all New Zealanders killed in war and also honours returned servicemen and women.

The date itself marks the anniversary of the landing of New Zealand and Australian soldiers – the Anzacs – on the Gallipoli Peninsula in 1915. The word Anzac is part of the culture of New Zealanders and Australians. People talk about the ‘spirit of Anzac’; there are Anzac biscuits, and rugby or rugby league teams from the two countries play an Anzac Day test. The word conjures up a shared heritage of two nations, but it also has a specific meaning.

Anzac biscuits and tea will be handed out to large crowd expected to attend Anzac commemorations in Wellington.

20,000 Anzac biscuits and tea will be handed out to large crowd expected to attend Anzac commemorations in Wellington.  Photo credit Fairfax NZ

Anzac is the acronym for Australian and New Zealand Army Corps.  Today, the word was used to describe all Australian and New Zealand soldiers who fought on the Gallipoli Peninsula and eventually, it came to mean any Australian or New Zealand soldier.

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The red poppy has become a symbol of war remembrance the world over. People in many countries wear the poppy to remember those who died in war or who still serve. In many countries, the poppy is worn around Armistice Day (11 November), but in New Zealand it is most commonly seen around Anzac Day, 25 April.

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Remembrance or Lest we forget is engraved on monuments to fallen soldiers in New Zealand, Australia and the United Kingdom.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.

At the going down of the sun and in the morning,
We will remember them. Lest We Forget.

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NZDF Hats at the Anzac Commemorative Site at ANZAC Cove, 2013. Photo: NZDF.

References
More about Anzac Day

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One thought on “Anzac Day

  1. Reblogged this on littlegirlstory and commented:

    Dawn services around the country saw record numbers of attendees as the significance of the centenary anniversary gave people an added reason to leave their warm beds at an early hour to attend services.

    The largest crowd in the country attended the 76th annual Dawn Service at the Auckland War Memorial Museum.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/video.cfm?c_id=1&gallery_id=149619&gal_objectid=11438588

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