With a Doodle that featured fluttering butterflies and bees buzzing around tulips Google on Wednesday marked the coming of Nowruz.
A compound of the Persian words now for new and ruz for day, Nowruz celebrations have heralded the return of spring and the start of a new year for people of Persian ancestry for more than 3,000 years. The festivities, according to Google, can last up to two weeks and start at the advent of the spring equinox — when nights begin shortening and days lengthening.
While Wednesday’s Doodle was only displayed in Kazakhstan, Nowruz is celebrated by Iranian and Turkic peoples around the world. Traditionally it is a time for cleaning house and buying new clothes, visiting friends and neighbors, and feasting on special foods.
Celebrations of Nowruz in Kazakhstan — where it is known as Nauryz — feature feasts and musical performances inside felt yurts and games played around a large hanging swing called an Altybakan, according to the country’s national tourism website.