The Holidays Celebrated In Colonial America

Maunday Thursday / Shere Thursday

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  Maunday, or Shere, Thursday is the day preceeding Good Friday.

  The Gentleman's Magazine dated July, 1779, noted that the name shere was related to the word mundus, and referred to the act of washing. It might have derived from the washing of feet or the washing of alters.

  In 1709 in was noted in The British Apollo that: Maunday is a corruption of the Latin word mandatum, a command The day is therefore so called, because as on that day our Saviour washed his disciple's feet, to teach them the great duty of being humble: and therefore he gives them in command to do as he had done....

  The monarchy of England was noted to commemorate the day by washing the feet of poor men. The number of those whose feet they would wash equaled the number of the years of their reign.

  German Catholics knew the day preceeding Good Friday as Fusswaschung, or rather, the "washing of the feet" day.