Before the ancient Roman calendar was updated to include the winter months of January and February, the year started with March.
Named for Mars, the Roman god of war, March was the time of year in ancient Rome when military campaigns could begin anew as the inclement days of winter were past.
Here are a few other tidbits about March you might find interesting:
It’s all about the weather. The phrase “in like a lion and out like a lamb” is often used to refer to this month.
The snow and bone-chilling cold weather at the beginning of March will often give way to warmer temperatures that allow for the first buds of the year to come forth by the time April rolls around.
However, there are times when the weather at the end of March makes one doubt that warmer days are ahead. According to folklore, “borrowing days” occur when it rains during the last three days of the month because March has borrowed the weather from traditionally rainy April.
By comparison, the first three days of month are referred to as “blind days,” during which time farmers should avoid sowing their crops. Rainfall during blind days is considered an omen for a poor harvest later in the year.
You must believe in spring, at some point. Regardless of the weather, a change is on the horizon, and it has a lot to do with the sun.
The hours of day and night are nearly the same when the vernal equinox arrives, heralding the first day of spring for those of us living in the Northern Hemisphere.
In places such as Australia, New Zealand, most of South America, a portion of Africa, and a bunch of tiny island nations in the South Pacific, this is the beginning of autumn.
In bloom. The daffodil is considered the flower of March, and if you planted bulbs last fall, you should enjoy blooms this month.
The daffodil is believed to symbolize deep love or regard. To give a gift of daffodils shows your unequivocal regard for the recipient.
In stone. The modern birthstone for March is aquamarine, but ancient Arabic, Hebrew, and Hindu practices associate the bloodstone with this month. Tibetan mystics consider jade to be March’s birthstone.
A month of madness. The overwhelming insanity that rules this time of year has little to do with brackets and college basketball.
The phrase “mad as a March hare” references the aggressive behaviors the male of this species exhibits during mating season.