From this time forward the new moons, which till then had been at least as important as the Sabbath and were celebrated by sacrificial feasts as occasions of religious gladness, fall into insignificance, except in the conservative temple ritual.
The steps by which the practice of resting from labour on the Lord's day instead of on the Sabbath was established in Christendom and received civil as well as ecclesiastical sanction are dealt with under Sunday; it is enough to observe here that this practice is naturally and even necessarily connected with the religious observance of the Lord's day as a day of worship and religious gladness, and is in full accordance with the principles laid down by Jesus in His criticism of the Sabbath of the Scribes.
Fill our hearts with joy and gladness, that ever having of all things a sufficiency, we may superabound in all good works, in Christ Jesus our Lord, &c.'" The writer then enjoins that, "if two or three other virgins are present, they also shall give thanks over the bread set out, and join in the prayers.
This month, Bede says, was the same as the mensis paschalis, " when the old festival was observed with the gladness of a new solemnity."
The streets were hung with rich cloths of silk arras and tapestry; the aldermen and principal men of the city threw out of their windows handsful of gold and silver, to signify their gladness at the king's return; and the conduits ran with wine, both white and red.