ANNUNCIATION, the announcement made by the angelGabriel to the Virgin Mary of the incarnation of Christ (Luke i,
26-38). The Feast of the Annunciation in the Christian Church
is celebrated on the 25th of March. The first authentic allusions
to it are in a canon, of the council of Toledo (656), and another
of the council of Constantinople “in Trullo” (692), forbidding
the celebration of all festivals in Lent, excepting the Lord’s day
and the Feast of the Annunciation. An earlier origin has been
claimed for it on the ground that it is mentioned in sermons of
Athanasius and of Gregory Thaumaturgus, but both of these
documents are now admitted to be spurious. A synod held at
Worcester, England (1240), forbade all servile work on this
feast day. See further Lady Day.
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