In Italy April 1st isn’t called April Fools Day.  Instead Italians celebrate with a practical joke called pesce d’aprile [April fish].  While the easiest way to pull a prank  is to stick a paper fish on someone’s back where they can’t see it, here are some classic April fish jokes that fooled entire cities.

 

 

 

1878

According to the newspaper the Italian Gazette curious Florentines could come witness the cremation of an Indian Maharaja in the Park delle Cascine which runs along the Arno River.  The announcement drew a large crowd, but the funeral procession never arrived.  Instead a group of boys jumped out from behind a bush and surprised the curious crowd with the yell of:  Fried April fish from the Arno!

 

 

1967

Another joke in Florence.  This time a fake notice was sent out from the URFA (Office of abandoned feline recovery) announcing that cats had just been banned from the city of Florence.  The result?  Some Florentines started to get rid of their dear pets by throwing them into the Arno River.

 

 

 

1969

In Ascoli Piceno a newspaper let the town know some great (fake) news that make bad drivers very happy. The Tax Office had just decided that it was possible to deduct 45% of the fines paid during the year from your income taxes.

 

 

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