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Anzac Day marks the anniversary of the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during WWI. 

Every year on April 25th, those from Australia and New Zealand enter a minute silence to remember and ponder the brave soldiers who lost their lives and the foreign wounded fighting for their countries.

To honor this sacred day for both countries, here are ten facts you may not know about Anzac Day and how it is commemorated.

1. April 25, Anzac Day, was the day the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps landed on the Gallipoli Peninsula in 1915.

anzac day

2. The ANZACs were all volunteers. There is no conscription. Men would go from afar to register because it to be a courageous and brave act to fight for your country. 

The ANZACs were all volunteers

3. The 25th was officially named Anzac Day in 1916, but the first unofficial dawn service was not held until 1923. Dawn was thought to be the best time to attack in battle, and So this is the reason behind keeping the service at the time of day.

 Anzac Day

4. ANZAC Day was not a public holiday in New Zealand until 1921. 

5. The Gallipoli Peninsula is very near the famous ancient city of Troy.

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6. More than 11,000 died at Gallipoli and more than 23,500 were wounded.


7. A lot of people wear rosemary or a poppy on Anzac Day. The wearing of rosemary is a mark of respect for those who have not returned from war (not just Gallipoli) and is worn in memory of their bravery.

Rosemary or a poppy on Anzac Day

8. The 'Last Post', played on a bugle, is part of the funeral and memorial services for veterans and soldiers as a final farewell. Traditionally, it was played to signal the end of the day, and in a funeral or memorial symbolizes that the duties of the dead have now finished and they are free to rest in peace.

9. ANZAC Day is also commemorated in Tonga, Samoa, Cook Islands and in the French towns of Longueval and Le Quesnoy, who all lost soldiers in the Gallipoli campaign.

10. Wives of Anzac soldiers made Anzac biscuits for their husbands to take with them. They had a long shelf life as they were not made with milk and eggs.

Anzac biscuits

11. 'Lest We Forget' isn't a throwaway line, it actually has meaning: it's an expression of remembrance, par excellence. It has dignified origins, a rich history.

"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

=>> See more New Zealand article


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