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The days of our lives

A few days ago, I chanced upon an intriguing bit of information on the Web. It was that the word “Wednesday” had its origins in “Odin’s Day,” the day honoring the god Odin in Norse mythology. All the while, I supposed that the English names of the days had simply been conjured from thin air, and that in the particular case of “Wednesday,” the Anglo-Saxons had perhaps playfully coined it from the word “wedding” in the sense of Wednesday being a propitious day for marital unions.

In 321 A.D, the reigning emperor, Constantine the Great, formally incorporated the system into the Roman calendar and decreed that the days be named in honor of Roman gods in the following order: Dis Slis, “Sun’s Day”; Dis Lnae, “Moon’s Day”; Dis Martis, “Mars’s Day”; Dis Mercuri, “Mercury’s Day”; Dis Jovis, “Jove’s Day” or “Jupiter’s Day”; Dis Veneris, “Venus’s Day”; and Dis Saturn, “Saturn’s Day.” Most of western Europe adopted this system, but the Anglo-Saxons decided to do a bit of reverse linguistic engineering. For the English calendar, they replaced the names of the Roman gods with those of their major Norse deities.

Read the original article at: Manila TImes

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