A popularly held belief about March is that if it comes in like a lion, it will go out like a lamb. While this can be attributed to the blustery weather often experienced in March, especially in North America, some claim the saying had other origins.
In early March, the constellation Leo the Lion can be seen, in the Northern Hemisphere, rising in the Eastern night sky. Near the end of the month of March, Leo the Lion beings to fade out and Aries, the Ram, or Lamb, can be seen in the night sky.
Other popular proverbs about March include the expressions “A dry March and a wet May fill barns and bays with corn and hay,” “As it rains in March, so it rains in June” and “March winds and April showers bring forth May flowers.”
It is said that rainfall during the first three days of March foretells a bad harvest, and some superstitious farmers wait until the fourth of the Month before sowing crops.
The month of March was named after Mars, the Roman god of war. In ancient Rome, March was the first month of the year, and was the first month of spring. It was the beginning of their year, and the start of the military campaign season.
The Western, or Christian, calendar was introduced by Pope Gregory Xlll, in 1582, and was slowly adopted by other countries over time, moving March to the third month of the year.
The birth flower for March is the daffodil, or jonquil. Named for the boy in Greek mythology who was cursed to turn into a narcissus flower as he fell in love with his own reflection, daffodils symbolize chivalry, respect, modesty and faithfulness. Also known as the Lent Lily because it blooms in early spring and usually loses its petals before Easter, this flower was the inspiration for the famous poem “Daffodils,” by William Wordsworth.
Forsythias are in yellow bloom all around Richmond County now, along with white Dogwood and Bradford Pear blossoms.
March’s birthstone is the aquamarine. Light blue in color, this stone is associated with beauty, honesty, loyalty and happiness. Since early times, the aquamarine has been believed to give its wearer foresight, courage and happiness. The stone is said to increase intelligence and make one youthful. A healing stone, it’s said to be an effective treatment for anxiety and, in the Middle Ages, was thought to lessen the effects of poison. Legend has it that sailors wore aquamarine stones to keep them safe and prevent seasickness.
If your birthday falls in March, you fall into the astrological signs Pisces or Aries. Those born between Feb. 19 and March 20 are Pisces. Pisces are said to be mysterious, alluring, and talented - though sometimes confused. Nicole Hayden, broker/owner of Exit Realty Platinum in Rockingham, whose birthday is today, said this about being a Pisces. “I don’t think of myself as mysterious. I’m more like an open book. What you see is what you get. I like to make people happy and to keep peace. I’m not sure all Pisces like their quiet time, but I sure do.”
People born between March 21 and April 19 belong to the sign Aries. Aries are said to be adventurous, active, outgoing, trusting - and have a wonderful ability to bounce back from adversity.
“Don’t forget stubborn, feisty, strong-willed, ambitious, talkative, easily angered, loyal and brutally honest,” said Nikki Wells, an Aries, from Hamlet. “I’m the epitome of an Aries - all of those traits definitely describe me!”
There’s more to March than the end of Mardi Gras, this month is host to quite a few special days. In addition to being Women’s History Month, March is home to: Ash Wednesday, March 9; St. Patrick’s Day, March 17; Save A Spider Day, March 14; Spring Training for Major League Baseball; March Madness: Final Four Men’s Basketball Championship; and don’t forget - Daylight Savings Time begins on March 11.
Staff writer Kelli Easterling can be reached at (910) 997-3111 ext. 18, or by email email@example.com