Why is it called October? – Oct. 2021

Hello everyone,

Your mid-term tests are finished and now we have started October. In two weeks we have sports day, go red team! (That is my color this year…)

Have you every wondered why the months in English have names? After all, in Japanese they are just numbers, one-two-three-four-five-etc. Actually, the names for the months come from Roman times. That means October has been called October for more than 2000 years!

But, if October is the 10th month, why is it called October? Shouldn’t it be the 8th
month? An octopus has 8 legs and an octagon has 8 sides. Well, 2000 years ago, the Romans only had 10 months, and October was the 8th. Over time, two more months were added, and October changed position (but kept the name).

December has the same story. Decimus meant “10th” to the Romans. That one is easy to remember because “deca” words mean ten. A decade is ten years and a decathlon is an event with ten sports.

Other months are named for gods, such as June (for Juno, the queen of the gods) and March (for Mars, the god of war… and also the red planet in the sky).

The history of words is very interesting, and useful when you study a new
language. You never know when the topic will appear!

Have a good week,