Talk:Thirty days hath September

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Alternate Lines[edit]

The way I was always taught this rhyme had some different lines, which are bolded:

Thirty days hath September
April, June, and November
February has twenty-eight alone,
All the rest have thirty-one.
Except in leap year, that's the time
When February days have twenty-nine.

Think this could be added? -- RattleMan 08:48, 26 December 2005 (UTC)

Interesting. I'd never come across that variant, but Google shows quite a few people using it. And it has a very interesting feature, which I've commented on in the article. — Haeleth Talk 12:47, 26 December 2005 (UTC)


Same, I teach this:
Thirty days hath September
April, June,and November
All the rest have Thirty-one.
Exempt for February;
witch has 28 days clear;
and 29 each leap year.
--70.49.59.214 (talk) 18:26, 26 May 2009 (UTC)


I was taught: Thirty days hath (has) September
April, June,and November
All the rest have Thirty-one.
Except for February;
which has 28 or 29
Breawycker (talk) 14:35, 11 October 2010 (UTC)

This was taught to me as a child, and none I've heard since has the same ring or appeal as far as I'm concerned.
Alternatives to this were only brought to my attention recently, when my children were taught some non rhyming variant they brought home from school one day.


30 days hath September
April, June, and November
31 the others date
Excepting February 28
But in a leap year we divine
February, 29

Cheers HDKilla (talk) 12:45, 20 April 2012 (UTC)


Other mnemotics?[edit]

Believe it or not but I had never heard of that mnemotic rhyme before!
The way I learned the duration of the months back in kindergarden was to look at my right hand, fist closed.
It works like this: count the months over your knuckles and the grooves between them.
The knuckle of the index is January - it sticks out, so it's a "long" month (31 days).
February is the groove between the index and middle finger knuckle (a "short" month).
March is the middle finger knuckle (a "long" month) etc.
When you reach the pinkie (July, "long"), start over at the index (August, "long" again) and continue...
Simple, right? Sure, it doesn't tell you that February has 28 or 29 days rather than 30 but I never found that hard to remember.
71.240.26.227 19:10, 5 May 2006 (UTC)

Other calendar mnemonics are discussed in the main article on mnemonics. It has one like that, but using both hands instead of going over one hand twice. — Haeleth Talk 21:54, 5 May 2006 (UTC)
I don't see anything about "knuckles" in the current version of the mnemonics page. How about putting a mention of it here? Here's a book from "Google books" that talks about it:
Lardner, Dionysius (1855). (Encyclopedias and dictionaries). Walton and Maberly. p. 152. "If the months be reckoned in numerical order from the beginning of the year, the odd months, as far as the seventh, and the even ones afterwards, are those which have thirty-one days. Thus, they are the first, third, fifth, seventh, eighth, tenth and twelfth, which are January, March, May, July, August, October and December.
"When we close the hand there are four projecting knuckles of the four fingers, with depressions between them. If we give the knuckles and intermediate depressions the names of the successive months, recommencing from the first knuckle, after having once gone over them, we shall find that the months of thirty-one days are those which fall upon the knuckles."
  Missing or empty |title= (help)
I suggest saying something short, such as "There is also a mnemonic using knuckles to remember the numbers of days of the months," with a footnote to the above citation, so that the quote appears in the footnote. --Coppertwig (talk) 21:40, 18 January 2008 (UTC)

Other languages[edit]

Since the Gregorian Calander is used world wide, how do the mnenomics go in other languages?

Tabletop 11:37, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

There was a time I only knew the German version. I speak English natively, but studied German in high school. I don't remember the whole thing anymore, but it started "Dreisig tage hat September". MichaelCrawford (talk) 08:34, 29 March 2008 (UTC)

A rhyming version[edit]

I've only ever known one and it rhymes better than any of the others:

Thirty days hath September, April, June, and November; Thirty-one the others date, Excepting February, twenty-eight; But in leap year we assign February, twenty-nine.

So I've put that in.Hilesd 06:35, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

And Another version that actually rhymes:

  • 30 DAYS HAS NOVEMBER, APRIL, JUNE, AND SEPTEMBER;
  • ALL THE REST HAVE 31, EXCEPT FEBRUARY WITH 28 AND IT IS DONE;
  • BUT EVERY 4 YEARS WE ARE NOT THROUGH, FEBRUARY COMES WITH ANOTHER DAY TOO.

--Dj1071 (talk) 03:44, 3 February 2012 (UTC)

why the knuckles?[edit]

The knuckle stuff really doesn't belong in an article about this poem.

It's a completely independent method for remembering the length of the months and doesn't depend on or support the poem in any way. It should be in it's own article. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 66.142.184.113 (talk) 05:05, 28 April 2008 (UTC)

I'd like to to see what title you would suggest for that article! Tpacw (talk) 12:45, 19 September 2008 (UTC)

It's strange how the author of the section goes to such lengths to describe how to count with your fingers, when the purported source does not mention it at all. And I think I'm right in saying the pointer knuckle in on the index finger. Aoeuidhtns (talk) 16:53, 6 May 2009 (UTC)

One Source[edit]

This article relies mainly on the Middle English Lyrics source, which is unlikely to contain the modern versions listed in the article. Each version should have a reference to a published, reliable source. twilsonb (talk) 22:11, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

Is the translation original research?[edit]

The translation was tagged as possible original research. Technically, it's not translated from "non-English" material, but it seems equivalent to what is allowed.

Wikipedia:No_original_research#Translations

SandyFace (talk) 07:37, 25 August 2009 (UTC)

Should an accurate translation be labled original research if the text translated is not?

Personly I think not... I am going to remove it. If it is infact justified please explain? 210.185.6.221 (talk) 09:52, 8 January 2010 (UTC)

knuckle method should get its own page[edit]

Yes, the knuckle method is far superior to the verse method and should get its own page.

I was taught the knuckle method of working out the days of the month by a Greek lady when I was about 11. I never bothered with the verse mnemomic after that. I have taught lots of kids the knuckle system and not one has ever reverted to the "30 days has..." business. It can be learnt in seconds, and is never forgotten. The English seem to persist with the witless rhyme (I don't know why) while nearly all Europeans follow the knuckle system. If you bother to remember that the first knuckle can be an August as well as a January, then you need never have to count beyond 7 months.

The biggest advantage of the knuckle over the verse system - and I seem to be the only person who has recognised this - is that the knuckle system SHOWS clearly how the number of days of the month alternate between 30 and 31, with knuckles (hills) being 31, and the following valley between the knuckles being 30. This alternating sequence is true for the whole year except for the adjacent months of July and August, which both have 31 days. By an astonishing coincidence, in the knuckle system, one moves directly from the knuckle of the last finger to the knuckle of the first finger and there is no intervening "valley". Thus, the knuckle system correctly identifies this double occurence of 31 days, without any artifical intervention. Why our knuckles should so precisely indicate the months of the year was known only to the great sages of the past.

That the months alternate in number in this way is not evident at all from the verse, which has all the months mixed up for the spurious reason of rhyme. For that reason, people who work out the "days of the month" by the verse are largely unaware that the months alternate sequentially between 31 and 30 (with some minor exceptions). I would make it mandatory that the knuckle method be taught at early primary school, and that anyone who did not do so be liable to a different kind of knuckle mnemomic. Myles325a (talk) 02:57, 17 February 2011 (UTC)

Grammatical error[edit]

I too was taught this rhyme at an early age. More recently I have pondered about the grammatical error in the first line. I note with interest that this error has survived since the fifteenth century. Shouls this be mentioned in the article? Spathaky (talk) 08:48, 30 September 2011 (UTC)