March Fun Facts
All months are fascinating in their own ways, and March is no exception.
The first U.S. Census was in March, 1790, possibly because winter’s thaws made travel to outlying farms and small communities easier to reach by census takers. Also selecting March as the month for the census could have been a carry-over from the old Roman calendar that had March as New Year’s Day. Until 1752, Great Britain and her colonies continued to celebrate March as the first month of the year.
The word, March, comes from the Latin word for Mars, Martiu, the Roman god of war. Many speculate that the naming coincided with the beginning of the season for warfare in those times, again due to warming temperatures after winter.
Jonquils are the flowers of March, as they are among the first to bloom in early spring. However, in the Southern U.S., where I live, it’s not unusual to see them open before Valentine’s Day. The Narcissus genus includes daffodils, jonquils, and paperwhites, among many others, so when in doubt, Narcissus is the term to use.
However, daffodil is the official common name for any of the plants that fall into the genus Narcissus. So, if the plant is considered a Narcissus, it is considered a daffodil as well. To make things even more confusing, buttercup is an incorrect term when referring to daffodils or Narcissus of any kind. Buttercups are totally different flowers. They are herbaceous perennials (that can also be an annuals) which have small yellow or white flowers with five separate petals.
March’s gemstones are aquamarines and bloodstones (heliotrope). Much historical folklore and beliefs surround both stones.
The word, aquamarine, comes from the Latin, aqua marina, that means “of the sea”. It is blue variety of beryl.
Aquamarine is the stone believed to help you be in touch with your spiritual being. The aquamarine is the stone of sailors, who thought it would protect them on water. Folklore says the aquamarine will also protect against gossip. This stone is powerful for meditation, as it brings a great peace and serenity. Aquamarine is metaphysically known as a stone of courage and fortitude that can bring great power. It is said to assist with quick intellectual response. Some believe that aquamarines bring inner peace, hope and self-love; and the stone has been used to dispel anger and fear.
The word, heliotrope, comes from the Greek helios (“sun”) and trepein (“to turn”); thus it refers to the way that inclusions of hematite in the stone reflect light. Heliotrope is a green variety of chalcedony with distinctive red spots (hematite or iron oxide) that resembles blood, giving this stone its more common name of bloodstone.
Bloodstone is the symbol of justice. It is said to help with calming, particularly in survival situations. It brings mystical energies of increasing adaptability and organization, and lessening confusion, stress, and anxiety. It is said to be a stone of courage, bringing mental, physical and emotional renewal by releasing blockages. It is said to be particularly good for helping emotional traumas and grief. It also enhances the intellect. Bloodstone is mystically used to bring energy to one in many ways, including bringing abundance, success, and prosperity, as well as smoothing the way with legal issues.
March is also the month associated with St. Patrick’s Day (March 17th) and shamrocks. A shamrock is a young sprig of clover, used as a symbol of Ireland. It usually refers to either the species Trifolium dubium (lesser clover) or Trifolium repens (white clover).
This year March 20th marks the vernal (spring) equinox in the Northern Hemisphere when daylight and night time hours will be approximately the same. It’s interesting to note that the date of Easter is the Sunday following the first full moon on or after the vernal equinox. That’s why Easter can occur as early as March 22nd or as late as April 25th.
One of them most well-known sayings about the month is that “March roars in like a lion and out like a lamb.” Let’s have fun celebrating March and its fun facts.