Why are there two Eids?

  • 1 September 2017
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How do you celebrate Eid?

Muslims across the UK are celebrating Eid al-Adha today. It's a day of celebrations and for children it often means lots of presents!

But it's not been long since Eid al-Fitr so you might be wondering why there are two Eids a year and not one...?

Why are there two Eids?

The word 'Eid' means 'feast' or 'festival'. Each year Muslims celebrate both Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha - but the names often get shortened to just 'Eid' and that's why it can be confusing.

Eid al-Fitr - which means 'festival of the breaking of the fast - is celebrated at the end of Ramadan, a month when many adult Muslims fast.

Eid al-Adha - which means 'feast of the sacrifice' - is celebrated just over two months later, at the same time when many Muslims perform the Hajj pilgrimage.

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Image caption Many Muslims will say the greeting Eid Mubarak on Eid - it means 'blessed Eid'

Festivals in Islam are based on the lunar calendar - which is around 11 days shorter than the solar calendar, the calendar which most people in the world use in their day to day life.

Being based on the lunar calendar means the dates of both Eids change each year but Eid al-Adha is always a little over two months after Eid al-Fitr.

On both Eids many Muslims will go to special Eid prayers at their local mosque and have a day of celebrations with family and friends.

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Image caption Eid meals with family and friends are a big part of the celebrations.

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