Description of this motif: New year is celebrated among most peoples. New years eve is a period of transformation, in which different ritual acts are performed. New year is associated with renewal. The world is new again, and you can start afresh.
"Yes," agreed a little shivering sparrow. "The people ran about firing off shots to celebrate the new year. And they banged pans and pots against the doors, and were quite noisy with joy because the old year was over.
Comment on this quote: According to Flemming Hovmann–s commentary in vol. 7 of H.C. Andersens eventyr, Dansk Sprog- og Litteraturselskab / Borgen 1990, p. 138, new year back then was celebrated with fireworks in order to keep evil away (trolls and the like).