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Google's Homepage Featured a Vibrant Nowruz Doodle to Commemorate the Persian New Year

On March 19, 2024, Google's homepage featured a vibrant and festive doodle to commemorate Nowruz, the Persian New Year. Nowruz, which means "new day" in Persian, is an ancient Iranian festival celebrated on the March equinox, marking the beginning of spring. The doodle's intricate design showcased elements of Persian culture, including colorful floral patterns, traditional calligraphy, and symbolic items.

This doodle paid tribute to the rich heritage of Nowruz, an important celebration with roots stretching back over 3,000 years. Originating in ancient Persia (modern-day Iran), Nowruz is recognized by UNESCO as an Intangible Cultural Heritage. It is a time for renewal, hope and unity, transcending religious and cultural boundaries. 

History of Nowruz

Nowruz has been celebrated for millennia, dating back to at least the Achaemenid Empire in the first millennium BC. The exact origins are unclear, but it is deeply intertwined with Persian cultural identity. During Nowruz, families partake in traditions like spring cleaning, visiting loved ones, exchanging gifts and enjoying special dishes.

An iconic symbol of Nowruz celebrations is the Haft-sin table, which is decorated with seven items whose names begin with 's' in Persian. Each item has a particular meaning, representing concepts like rebirth, health and prosperity. Over the centuries, Nowruz traditions spread along the Silk Road, influencing neighboring regions in Central Asia, the Caucasus and the Middle East. Today it continues to be observed by many ethnic and religious groups across a wide geography.

As the arrival of spring is welcomed around the world, Google's colorful doodle serves as a reminder of Nowruz's enduring legacy as a festival promoting renewal, community and cultural heritage. Its ancient Persian roots are reflected in contemporary celebrations that bring people together across boundaries.

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