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🗓️ April 15

Ancient Rome

Ancient times

❗ Trigger-warning: ❗
Fordicidia is a very outdated festival that involves animal cruelty.
We strongly advice to leave this celebration in the past.

A festival of incredibly shameless animal sacrifice

Fordicidia! A day of celebration, sacrifice, and apparently, killing innocent animals for some weird, outdated reason.
It’s a holiday that makes us want to run for the hills.
Before we dive into the bloody-gorey details of this holiday, let us be clear that we strongly advise against celebrating it in any way, shape, or form. Let’s make sure Fordicidia remains a historical celebration and not a contemporary one.

Why would they do that?

So, what exactly is Fordicidia and why should we not be celebrating it?
Fordicidia was a festival of fertility held on the Ides of April (April 15) in ancient Roman religion.
The name “Fordicidia” was derived from “fordae cows,” meaning “pregnant cows,” as this festival involved the sacrifice of several pregnant cows to Tellus, the ancient Roman goddess of the Earth. Fordicidia means literally “cow killing”.
Killing animals in the name of celebrating the goddess of fertility is kinda ironic. Like the kind of irony you would expect in a horror movie with lazy writers.
The purpose of this festival was to ensure the fertility of the fields, as well as to honor the goddess of the Earth.

Even more questionable origins:

In terms of mythology and culture, Fordicidia played a role in the founding of Rome, as the legendary king Romulus was said to have consulted with the god Mars during a Fordicidian sacrifice.
In terms of science we now know that lead poisoning  was alarmingly prevalent in ancient Rome, due to the widespread use of lead in everyday life, such as in plumbing, food containers and its popular use as an artificial sweetener!
Lead poisoning can have devastating effects on the brain and mental state.
Lead exposure can and will cause  numbness, tingling, joint pain, muscle weakness, developmental delays, lower IQ levels, behavioral problems, and difficulty with attention, decline in memory, decreased cognitive function, depression, anxiety, and increased risk of Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease and many other types of nerve damage as well.
This might explain some of the behavior like festivities that involved extensive slaughtering, watching bloody sports and remarkably cruel political scandals of that time.
So, how many lumps of lead would you like in your tea?

But what about…

But wait, other cultures have animal sacrifices too, why pick on Fordicidia?
Good point, but Fordicidia is different because it’s purposely sacrificing a very visibly pregnant cow with the purpose of taking two lives instead of one.
And while other holidays may involve sacrifices, they’re usually a little less… graphic
So, what other celebrations is Fordicidia similar to?
It’s not exactly like any other holiday that we celebrate today.
It’s kind of like a mix between Easter and Halloween, but it makes Halloween look like a celebration of gently cuddling fluffy black kittens and adorning them with flower necklaces.

Similar but not as bloody.

A festival that seems similar and does not involve hurting animals was documented in 1804 by British ambassador to China, John Barrow who witnessed a Chinese spring festival. At the temple of Earth, a large porcelain cow was carried in procession then shattered to reveal several small cow-images inside. These tiny cow-images were distributed among the people as tokens of a good growing season.
It’s like a deluxe pinata, but with thousands of pointy shards.

But what if you still really want to celebrate Fordicidia?

The good news is that there are plenty of alternatives to animal sacrifice:

  • You can celebrate by sacrificing gummy bears. 
  • Cut up a cake in the shape of a cow into pieces. 
  • You can viciously sink your teeth into chocolate bunnies.
  • You can scrape your knife over a lamb shaped from butter and make red jelly sandwiches. 
  • Snack on animal crackers.
  • You can slaughter a cute pink piglet made from marzipan.
  • Or something opposite from destruction and plant a tree.


Fordicidia is a destructive outdated practice that has no place in today’s society.
Just remember, the goal is to celebrate growth, life, and the beauty of nature.
Because let’s be honest, do we really need another excuse to kill innocent creatures?
Let’s leave the sacrificing of innocent creatures to the history books and move towards a more ethical and constructive future.

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