Sunday, February 26, 2012
In ancient Rome, March was the first month of the year and was named Martius after Mars (Ares), the god of war. In Italy, March was the first month of Spring, and was the logical point for the beginning of the new year (and the start of military campaigns). January became the first month of the calendar year either under King Numa Pompilius (713 BC), or under Decemvirs, about 450 BC (Roman authors differ).
The numbered year began on March 1 in Russia until the end of the 15th century. Great Britain and her colonies continued to use March 25 until 1752, which was when they ultimately adopted the Gregorian calendar.
The god Mars embodied masculinity, virility, and a passions for war (ultimately directed towards lasting peace). This March I shall be posting the Manly March series, dedicated to the masculine lifestyle (nb: masculine ≠ thuggery, rednecks or other borish stereotyping).