Months of The Year in English

Learning months’ names in English is one painless way to begin your journey into mastery of the language. Therefore, in this article, we aim to help you with that.

Following several calendar inventions and adjustments, the Gregorian Calendar is today the global touchstone for tailing the year. A year consists of months and days. According to the modern calendar, 28 to 31 days make a month, and 12 months, 365 days that is, make a year. Finally, after every four years, one (intercalary) day adds to the 28 days in the second month to make a leap year. Seven out of the 12 have 31 days each, four have 30 days, and one with 28/29 days. This number disparity is to align with the lunar cycle since evenly dividing up the year into months will not provide a round figure.

Keeping track of days and the resulting calendar innovations was a series of interesting upheavals.; they were not an accident. Instead, a carefully followed process spanning about four millennia. However, before we delve into the subject, we should let you know you can learn English online free to sharpen your speaking skills. You get to study at your convenient time and have access to helpful tools and materials while learning.

Source: EnglishCLUB

Months’ Names in English

1. January – Jan. – 31 days

Named after the Roman God of beginnings, duality, gateways, and endings – Janus – January is the first month in the Gregorian and Julian Calendars. Originally not one of the calendar months, history has it that it was only added following the reforms executed by Numa Pompilius during his reign as King.

Sentence example: It is super cold in Boston in January, so I think I might go buy a jacket recently.

2. February – Feb. – 28/29 days

From the Latin word “februum,” which suggests cleansing or purification, it is no coincidence that February is the Roman month of Lupercalia or Februa. Like January, February became a calendar month at the instance of Numa Pompilius, and it is the last month of the winter season.

Sentence example: The Romans purified the cities on the 15th day of February.

3. March – Mar. – 31 days

Ab initio, this was the first month of the year before January (Ianuarius), and February (Februarius) were introduced to the calendar. It is named after the Roman god of war – Mars. This is because it is the perfect time to resume military activities halted because of winter.

Sentence example: March is the third month of the year.

4. April – Apr. – 30 days

April (Aprilis) stems from the Latin term “apeire,” **which literally means “to open” or “to appear.” It is the month farmers return to their farms, and plants and trees begin to blossom, especially in the Northern Hemisphere. Also, the month is widely associated with Aphrodite, the beauty goddess.

Sentence example: John is getting married sometime in April.

5. May – May – 31 days

The fifth month of the year is associated with Maia, the Roman deity of growth. This period sees the spring season’s peak, a crucial time for agriculture. Maia’s is also identified with plant nurturing; hence the association with farming.

Sentence example: My parents will return from their trip to China in May.

6. June – Jun. – 30 days

June is the month of Iuno, the goddess of marriage and childbirth. Traditionally, in Rome, weddings happen in this month in reverence of the deity. Also, Iuno comes from the word “iuniore,” meaning “younger” or “vibrant.” June marks the beginning of summer, which is a great time for parties and enjoyment.

Sentence example: Last June, we received a memo from the head office.

7. July – Jul. – 31 days

Originally known as Quintilis, meaning “fifth,” and in context, “the fifth month” according to the Roman calendar. Following the changes over the years, the name was changed to July in honor of Julius Caesar. At this time, it had become the seventh month.

Sentence example: July is my favorite month because it is usually warm.

8. August – Aug. – 31 days

In honor of the first Roman Emperor, Augustus Caesar, a relative of Julius Caesar, sextilis was renamed August. Sextilis, from the root word “sextus” meaning “sixth,” ceased to be the sixth month after Ianarius and Februairiusbecame the first two months.

Sentence example: On the 4th of August, the police apprehended the criminal.

9. September – Sept. – 30 days

From the root word “septem,” the prefix “sept-” literally connotes the number seven. September is today, the ninth month of the year. Traditionally, this month was dedicated to the Roman Games (Ludi Romani).

Sentence example: I last saw my best friend in September last year.

10. October – Oct. – 31 days

Until the Roman Calendar was converted to a 12-month calendar, October was the eighth month of the year. The month is significant because it is the month to honor goddess Victoria and also marks the commencement of the Sullan Victory Games (Ludi Victoriae Sullanae).

Sentence example: We will celebrate this victory in October when I return.

11. November – Nov. – 30 days

November, the ninth month turned eleventh, derives its name from the Latin word “novem,” which means “nine.” It is the month when the Plebeian Games (Ludi Plebeii) begin. The religious festival spans four days, from the fourth to the seventh of November. Today, the month is widely regarded as the one for Thanksgiving in America.

Sentence example: We would be ready to launch the program in November.

12. December – Dec. – 31 days

December is the first month of winter, characterized by less daylight. According to the Gregorian Calendar, it is the 12th month of the year even though it was originally the 10th in the Roman year. December is today one of the most anticipated months globally because it is the month for Christmas celebrations and holidays.

Sentence example: December is such a cold month.

 MonthShort formNumber of Days
1JanuaryJan.31
2FebruaryFeb.28 (29 in a leap year)
3MarchMar.31
4AprilApr30
5MayMay31
6JuneJun.30
7JulyJul.31
8AugustAug.31
9SeptemberSep.30
10OctoberOct.31
11NovemberNov.30
12DecemberDec.31

The Origin of the Modern Calendar

Out of the sheer need to track how days go by, several cultures and civilizations attempted to create unique systems to monitor time. Over the years, it has been a complex mix of astronomy, politics, and religion. As far back as 3000 BC, the Mesopotamians already had a full-blown system, and by 2500 BC, the Egyptians had created theirs. However, the basis of the modern calendar (the Gregorian) is the Roman one which was executed in about 750 BC by the first King of the empire – King Romulus. Months’ name in English originated in this very calendar.

Note that the program under Romulus had only ten months, excluding the winter months of January and February. That is to say, the year began in March and ended in December. This arrangement was subsequently adjusted by Numa Pompilius, the next and second King of Rome, to include Ianuarius and Februarius. This was called the Republican Calendar, with a total of 355 days. As the years passed, subsequent kings also made a few changes to the number of days for each month. The most notable of these reforms was the one initiated by Julius Caesar in 46 BC which saw the birth of the Julian Calendar. The calendar had 12 months, 365 days, with an extra day added to February every four years. However, this system had other complexities that made it add three days every four centuries. By implication, the Julian Calendar is currently 13 days behind. The Gregorian Calendar was introduced in 1582 to correct this anomaly and is today the international standard. If you have desire to further your English language learning, check out this roundup of ten advanced English classes.

 MonthsEnglish TranslationDays
1IanuariusJanuary29
2FebruariusFebruary28
3MartiusMarch31
4AprilisApril29
5MaiusMay31
6JuniusJune29
7QuintilisJuly31
8SextilisAugust29
9SeptemberSeptember29
10OctoberOctober31
11NovemberNovember29
12DecemberDecember29

N.B: J is pronounced I.

The Ten Months Roman Calendar

Source: HKO

Straightaway, it is worthy to note that the Romans were a highly religious and political people. It is no coincidence that the ten-month Roman calendar had staunch religious and political significance. In fact, some months were named after kings and gods. For example, Martius and Maius were associated with Mars and Maia, the Roman god and goddess of War and Growth, respectively.

King Romulus floated the Roman Calendar, which had only ten months: Martius, Aprilis, Maius, Iunius, Quintilis, Sextilis, September, October, November, and December. Theorists say that the winter period was unaccounted for because it was a relatively inactive period in the Kingdom. Military activities, farming, etc., all come to a temporary halt due to the harsh weather conditions of the time. Therefore, the Roman Calendar only had space for 304 days though there was a general notion that winter spanned 51. With the ascension of Numa Pompilius, he excluded one day from each month with 30 days and added them to the 51 to make 57. He then divided that figure into two months – Ianuarius (29) **and Februarius (28). Those two henceforth marked the beginning of the year.

Though the changes remain till this day, they disrupted the original calendar as month names no longer correspond with literal meanings. Quintilis, for instance, meaning “fifth” as in “the fifth month,” was now the seventh month on the calendar. All the months down to December had different meanings henceforth. The same root can also be seen in months’ name in English.

 MonthsEnglish TranslationNumber of days
1MartiusMarch31
2AprilisApril30
3MaiusMay31
4IuniusJune30
5QuintilisFifth month31
6SextilisSixth month30
7SeptemberSeventh30
8OctoberEighth31
9NovemberNinth30
10DecemberTenth30

Mesopotamian to Gregorian: The Daunting Journey

Source: timeanddate

Now you know the origin and history of calendars through the course of man’s existence. Historically, the Sumerians in Mesopotamia developed the earliest system; however, achieving accuracy will take another 4500 years through multiple civilizations. The modern calendar owes its existence to the effort that saw to the development of the Roman Calendar. However, due to the inherent flaws of the Julian Calendar, the Gregorian Calendar (modern) was introduced in 1582. It is very interesting to see the origins of these months’ names in English, right? Do you care to smoothen your conversational English fluency through personalized classes? You will find native-speaking teachers ready to help you meet your language goals at a pocket-friendly cost. Besides English translation of the calendar months, you would also find months in Spanish pretty interesting. , you will find the best courses in over 100 other languages. Sign up and get in touch with best-fit tutors at AmazingTalker.

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