It is a long time since January has been accepted as the first month of the year. This name had its beginnings in Roman mythology after Janus who was their God of Gateways or Doorways or of the Journey.
Fact 1 The Beginning
According to the Julian and Gregorian calendars, January is the first month of the year. The name comes from the Roman God Janus which in Latin means “door”. He had two faces which enabled him to look in both directions, back at the gone by year and forward towards the New Year simultaneously. The first day of January is known as New Year’s Day and it is one among the seven other months of the year that has thirty-one days. People of the northern hemisphere experience winter during this month and is often the coldest month and people living in the southern hemisphere enjoys January as the warmest month of the Gregorian calendar.
Fact 2 History
According to tradition, the original Roman calendar had ten months consisting of 304 days altogether and winter was considered as month-less period. Later around 713 BCE King Numa Pompilius of Rome added the two months of January and February. Thus January became the first month of the year. At the beginning of the 16th century, the European countries began making 1st January as the start of the New Year officially which was sometimes called Circumcision Style because it was the date of the Feast of Circumcision, being the eighth day from 25th December.
Fact 3 Explanations In Favor Of Selecting January As The First Month
There were other names associated with the month of January. The Saxon term “wulf-monath” meaning month of the wolf implied that wolves came out in search of food during these wintermonths. Charlemagne’s designation “wintar manoth” to January means cold or wintermonth. These were the other original Roman names of January. It was believed that Janus, the God of Doorway protected the Gates of Heaven and He is also known as the Lord of Beginnings. Hence the first month of the year naturally came to be known as January. It marks the beginning of a new year of hope and opportunities. The old ideas and thoughts and all that had happened are left behind and we look forward to a new start of everything and make many promises and resolutions to make life better and happier.
Fact 4 Implications Of The Month Of January
There are various notions associated with this month of January. The birth stone of this month is Garnet and the Carnation flower is its symbol. According to astrologers, all those born in the month of January are Capricorns or Aquarians. 7th of January is celebrated as Louis Braille Day, a figure who invented Braille form of writing for the blinds. To welcome the New Year on 1st of January, New Year Eve is also celebrated. In Scotland it is celebrated with a lively festival called Hogmanay.
Moreover, the weather during this time of the year is quite pleasant in most countries except countries lying in the extreme north of the northern hemisphere. Children celebrate Christmas and enjoy holidays in the December and start the New Year on the 1st of January with new zeal and enthusiasm.
Fact 5 New Year Superstition
There was a superstition prevalent among the farmers in the medieval period. They would put a flat cake on one of the horns of a cow and then everybody would dance around her until the cake was thrown to the ground. If it fell in front of the cow it was a mark of good luck and good times ahead and vice versa.