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March is the third month of the year in both the Julian and Gregorian calendars. Its length is 31 days. In the Northern Hemisphere, the meteorological beginning of spring occurs on the first day of March. The March equinox on the 20 or 21 marks the astronomical beginning of spring in the Northern Hemisphere and the beginning of autumn in the Southern Hemisphere, where September is the seasonal equivalent of the Northern Hemisphere's March.


March, from the Très Riches Heures du Duc de Berry, a book of prayers to be said at canonical hours

The name of March comes from Martius, the first month of the earliest Roman calendar. It was named after Mars, the Roman god of war, and an ancestor of the Roman people through his sons Romulus and Remus. His month Martius was the beginning of the season for warfare,[1] and the festivals held in his honor during the month were mirrored by others in October, when the season for these activities came to a close.[2] Martius remained the first month of the Roman calendar year perhaps as late as 153 BC,[3] and several religious observances in the first half of the month were originally new year's celebrations.[4] Even in late antiquity, Roman mosaics picturing the months sometimes still placed March first.[5]

March 1 began the numbered year in Russia until the end of the 15th century. Great Britain and its colonies continued to use March 25 until 1752, when they finally adopted the Gregorian calendar (the fiscal year in the UK continues to begin on 6 April, initially identical to 25 March in the former Julian calendar). Many other cultures, for example in Iran, or Ethiopia, still celebrate the beginning of the New Year in March.[6]

March is the first month of spring in the Northern Hemisphere (North America, Europe, Asia and part of Africa) and the first month of fall or autumn in the Southern Hemisphere (South America, part of Africa, and Oceania).

Ancient Roman observances celebrated in March include Agonium Martiale, celebrated on March 1, March 14, and March 17, Matronalia, celebrated on March 1, Junonalia, celebrated on March 7, Equirria, celebrated on March 14, Mamuralia, celebrated on either March 14 or March 15, Hilaria on March 15 and then through March 22–28, Argei, celebrated on March 16–17, Liberalia and Bacchanalia, celebrated March 17, Quinquatria, celebrated March 19–23, and Tubilustrium, celebrated March 23. These dates do not correspond to the modern Gregorian calendar.

Other names[edit]

In Finnish, the month is called maaliskuu, which is believed to originate from maallinen kuu. The latter means earthy month and may refer to the first appearance of "earth" from under the winter's snow.[7] In Ukrainian, the month is called березень/berezenʹ, meaning birch tree, and březen in Czech. Historical names for March include the Saxon Lentmonat, named after the March equinox and gradual lengthening of days, and the eventual namesake of Lent. Saxons also called March Rhed-monat or Hreth-monath (deriving from their goddess Rhedam/Hreth), and Angles called it Hyld-monath.

In Slovene, the traditional name is sušec, meaning the month when the earth becomes dry enough so that it is possible to cultivate it. The name was first written in 1466 in the Škofja Loka manuscript. Other names were used too, for example brezen and breznik, "the month of birches".[8] The Turkish word Mart is given after the name of Mars the god.


The Daffodil, the floral emblem of March
Aquamarine gemstones
Aquamarine gemstones
Polished bloodstones
Polished bloodstones

March's birthstones are aquamarine and bloodstone. These stones symbolize courage. Its birth flower is the daffodil.[9] The zodiac signs are Pisces until approximately March 20 and Aries from approximately March 21 onward.[10]


This list does not necessarily imply either official status or general observance.




(All Baha'i, Islamic, and Jewish observances begin at the sundown prior to the date listed, and end at sundown of the date in question unless otherwise noted.)


First Sunday[edit]

First week, March 1 to 7[edit]

School day closest to March 2[edit]

First Monday[edit]

First Tuesday[edit]

First Thursday[edit]

First Friday[edit]

Second Sunday[edit]

Week of March 8: March 8–14[edit]

Monday closest to March 9, unless March 9 falls on a Saturday[edit]

Second Monday[edit]

Second Wednesday[edit]

Second Thursday[edit]

Friday of the second full week of March[edit]

Third week in March[edit]

Third Monday[edit]

March 19th, unless the 19th is a Sunday, then March 20[edit]

Third Wednesday[edit]

March equinox: c. March 20[edit]

Fourth Monday[edit]

Fourth Tuesday[edit]

Last Saturday[edit]

Last Sunday[edit]

Last Monday[edit]



  1. ^ Mary Beard, John North, and Simon Price, Religions of Rome (Cambridge University Press, 1998), pp. 47–48 and 53.
  2. ^ Michael Lipka, Roman Gods: A Conceptual Approach (Brill, 2009), p. 37. The views of Georg Wissowa on the festivals of Mars framing the military campaigning season are summarized by C. Bennett Pascal, "October Horse," Harvard Studies in Classical Philology 85 (1981), p. 264, with bibliography.
  3. ^ H.H. Scullard, Festivals and Ceremonies of the Roman Republic (Cornell University Press, 1981), p. 84; Gary Forsythe, Time in Roman Religion: One Thousand Years of Religious History (Routledge, 2012), p. 14 (on the uncertainty of when the change occurred).
  4. ^ Scullard, Festivals and Ceremonies of the Roman Republic, p. 85ff.
  5. ^ Aïcha Ben Abed, Tunisian Mosaics: Treasures from Roman Africa (Getty Publications, 2006), p. 113.
  6. ^ "Nowruz is a celebration of springtime—and a brand new year". History. 2022-03-15. Archived from the original on March 18, 2021. Retrieved 2022-06-29.
  7. ^ "The Meaning of the Finnish Months". 4 March 2020.
  8. ^ "Koledar prireditev v letu 2007 in druge informacije občine Dobrova–Polhov Gradec" [The Calendar of Events and Other Information of the Municipality of Dobrova–Polhov Gradec] (PDF) (in Slovenian). Municipality of Dobrova-Polhov Gradec. 2006. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-11-02.
  9. ^ "March Birth Flower : Flower Meaning".
  10. ^ "Astrology Calendar", yourzodiacsign. Signs in UT/GMT for 1950–2030.
  11. ^ "Women's Month | Department of Education". Retrieved 2023-11-02.
  12. ^ "National Cerebral Palsy Awareness Month – UCP". ucp.org. Archived from the original on 2017-07-07. Retrieved 2016-03-25.
  13. ^ "Homepage". 2 February 2018.
  14. ^ "International Women's Day 2022 theme: Break the Bias". International Women's Day. Retrieved 2022-03-08.

External links[edit]