Anyone searching Google today may have noticed a change in the famous logo that was created to celebrate the annual Mexico Day of the Dead celebrations.

Inspired by a traditional celebration, the new Google logo is courtesy of illustrator Lydia Nichols, whose sugar font includes two candy skulls that allude to the sweet treats shared by friends and family on the Day of the Dead.

What is the Day of the Dead?

Characters disguised as calavers parade through the streets during the “Day of the Dead” festival in Mexico / Google Doodle photo from November 1, 2022, designed by illustrator Lydia Nichols
Media i media / Co-creator / Getty / Google

Traditionally celebrated on November 1 and 2, and provincial on other days such as October 31 and November 6, the origin of the Mexican Day of the Dead has given rise to some debate as to whether it comes from the Aztec indigenous people of Mexico or is of Spanish origin.

Some scholars point to traditions of commemoration of the dead that date back to before Christopher Columbus’s arrival in the Americas in 1492. However, others argue that similar traditions stem from medieval Europe and celebrations such as All Saints ‘Day and All Souls’ Day that have been observed in countries like Spain.

The Day of the Dead is very different in tone to those of the Christian holidays, with it being a holiday rather than a mourning. Traditionally, it is considered a day when the souls of the dead visit the living and is an opportunity for friends and family to come together to remember those who died by sharing fond memories and stories about the dead.

According to tradition, on the Day of the Dead, mourners build private altars with the deceased’s favorite foods and drinks, as well as photos of the dead and other souvenirs. They were made to persuade the souls of those who passed away to visit them and hear their prayers. Altars are traditionally built at home or in public places, although in some cases they have been set up in cemeteries near the graves of those who have passed.

Decorative skulls known as calaveras are shown in the form of clay or sugar, placed as offerings or offerings on private altars or as gifts to friends. The tombstones are also decorated with marigold flowers named Flor de Muerto or Flower of Dead, as their strong scent is believed to bring souls home.

Friends and family share the sweet bread known as pan de muerto, while some write and perform calaveras literarias, a light form of poetry that serves as a disrespectful epitaph to those who have been lost.

Why is Google celebrating the Day of the Dead?

Google Today was created by Lydia Nichols from real sugar to celebrate the traditions of the Day of the Dead.

The Google Doodle concept dates back to 1998, when founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin embellished the company’s logo to indicate that they were attending the Burning Man festival in the Nevada desert and were “out of the office”.

Two years later, webmaster Dennis Hwang, who was then an intern, was called to create the Bastille Day Doodle. It proved so popular that Doodles have become a regular feature in celebrating and highlighting various holidays, events, anniversaries and people.

Commenting on its latest Doodle, Google said: “Today, the streets pulsate with Spanish folk songs as one of Mexico’s most important annual celebrations begins – the Day of the Dead, Día de los Muertos! skulls made of sugar or clay. Doodle art is made of real sugar to celebrate the tradition! “

“Whether Mexicans are at home, in a cemetery, or at a local parade, the day is filled with stories and laughter to commemorate loved ones and ancestors. Happy Day of the Dead in Mexico! “

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