March is full of surprises, and we’re not talking just about the weather! How much do you know about this unpredictable month?
March Was Named After A Warrior God
March was named for the Roman god of war, [Mars]
Because March comes at a time when the weather warms (and warriors get back to fighting!)
The Ides Of March
On the Roman calendar, the midpoint of every month was known as the [Ides]. Supposedly in 44 BC, a seer warned Julius Caesar that his downfall would come on the Ides of March. Indeed, Caesar attended a Senate meeting where he was murdered by as many as 60 conspirators. (Currently, the place where Caesar died is now a no-kill cat sanctuary.)
The Salem Witch Trials Began
In 1692, in Salem, Massachusetts Bay Colony, the Salem witch trials began. Sarah Goode, Sarah Osborne, and Tituba, an Indian slave were accused of practicing witchcraft. Eventually, 19 innocent men and women were killed as a result.
“Comes In Like A Lion, Goes Out Like A Lamb”
Historians are not quite sure how this saying originated. One of the earliest citations is in Thomas Fuller’s 1732 book, Gnomologia: Adagies and Proverbs: Wise Sentences and Witty Sayings, Ancient and Modern, Foreign and British. They cite the wording as March: “Comes in like a Lion, goes out like a Lamb.”
On March 11th, 1818, Frankenstein (The Modern Prometheus) was published. The book was written by a 21-year-old Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley. It was recognized as the world’s first science fiction novel.
Remember The Alamo!
On March 6th, 1836, the Battle of The Alamo took place in San Antonio, Texas. Santa Anna’s Mexican army killed between 182-257 Texans were killed in a pre-dawn raid.
“Silly Putty” Goes On Sale
On March 6th, 1950, Silly Putty was introduced to the public by Peter Hodgson. It was invented in 1943 by James Wright.
Barbie’s appearance was modeled after a racy German comic strip character named [Lilli] on March 9th, 1950.
Chicago Turns Its River [Green]
On St. Patrick’s Day, Chicagoan’s celebrate in a big way. Many employees take off early. Starting in 1961, the custom of dying the Chicago River green began. Chicagoan’s also hold a big parade. (The first St. Patrick’s Day parade was held by Irish soldiers serving in the British army in New York City in 1762.)
March Is The Worst Month For Productivity! Thanks To Basketball!
It’s estimated that more than 60 million Americans take part in [March Madness] tournament brackets. (Even ex-President Obama has taken part.) Some even argue the practice is now a part of American tradition. For businesses, these games wreak havoc causing workers to call in sick or take extra long breaks. Analyst estimate that American companies would lose more than $1.9 Billion in wages paid to unproductive workers.