Happy Monday and Happy New Year. It’s time for Did You Know.
January was named for the Roman god Janus, known as the protector of gates and doorways, who symbolized beginnings and endings. Janus is depicted with two faces, one looking into the past, the other with the ability to see into the future. The Romans often made promises to Janus and exchanged good wishes.
But did you know January was not originally the first month of the year or even a month at all?
The months of January and February were not originally in the ancient Roman calendar, as the winter months were considered dormant, both in terms of agriculture and in terms of making war—it was a time of peace. Until 450 BCE, the Roman calendar was a 10-month lunar calendar that began with March (Martius), due to the March Equinox: Martius, Aprilis, Maius, Iunius, Quintilis, Sextilis, September, October, November, and December. When Julius Caesar became pontifex maximus, he made changes to a solar calendar, at which time January became the first month.
New Year’s Day, the first of January, is still considered a time of new beginnings in accordance with the Roman god the month is named after. In that spirit, Stitched Smile Publications is undergoing restructuring and new beginnings also. We will be sharing details soon.
In the mean time, SSP wishes everyone a safe and prosperous new year.