Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Wednesday WOLF

I've got a collection of random information in my brain that makes me an awesome Trivial Pursuit partner, but is completely useless when it comes to real world application. Like say, job applications. I thought I'd share some of this random crap with you in the form of another acronym-ific series. I give you - Word Origins from Left Field. Er... ignore the fact that the "from" doesn't fit.

Today we're going to talk about days of the week! Obviously I've got a little fixation with those myself, as I have three of my posting days titled after them (Wednesday WOLF, Thursday Thoughts & The Saturday Slash).

So where do they come from?

You probably know we owe a lot to the Romans (and wow, do I ever mean A LOT), but our weekly calendar is downright Anglo-Saxon.
  • Monday - "Moon's Day" Not sure why night-time was a big deal at the beginning of the week. Maybe everyone just wanted to sleep in.
  • Tuesday - from "Tiw's Day" Tiw was the God of War in Norse Mythology. Unsure why Tuesday got that honor. Personally I'm more grumpy on Monday.
  • Wednesday - from "Wodin's (Odin's) Day" Odin being a Scandinavian / Norse God of war, battle, victory and death, among other things. Apparently making war was a big deal.
  • Thursday - is from "Thor's Day" Thor being the Norse god of thunder and lightning. 
  • Friday - "Frigg's Day" from the Anglo-Saxon goddess Frigg. No word on whether she's the goddess of pizza and beer, but that's how I roll. Especially after a week of making war and having bad weather.
  • Saturday - from "Saturn's Day." Saturn was the Roman god of agriculture, but also liberation. And honestly, that makes the most sense.
  • Sunday - "Sun's Day" For ancient sun-worshipping culture, this was a day of religious observation, which in turn was adopted by Christians to represent the resurrection of Christ. In Russian the word for Sunday literally translates as resurrection, whereas in other Slavic languages it translates as no work. And after my Saturday, that sounds pretty good.


HeatherCRaglin said...

I don't know where you come up with this stuff, but I really like this info. I'll be sharing with my kids.

Jai said...

Goddess of pizza and beer, oh yeah!

Fun post!

Anonymous said...

The Latin-speaking Christians who came to impose their faith on the Norse were fond of assimilation so when they were chatting up the "heathens" they said things like, "Hey, your god Odin hung on a tree for three nights; that's cool, our god hung on a cross..." (The habit of wearing a cross around your neck comes from Norsemen wearing Thor's hammers - you'll note the similarity of shape). So when it came to days of the week, they found similarities between the Roman gods the days were named for and tied them to the Norse gods. Naturally, they screwed them up, but we're stuck with them: Tyr (Tiw) for Mars, the god of war (got that right); Odin (Wodan) for Mercury (huh?); Thor for Jove (because of his strength, popularity and fondness for thunderbolts); and Frigg for Venus (which is clearly wrong; Freyja would be the equivalent of Venus and would still make sense as leading to the word Friday so I've never understood this one).

Mindy McGinnis said...

Heather - good! It's amazing how little most of us know about the words we use everyday!

Jai - :)

mfan - There you go, I knew you'd appreciate this post and feed us some more background. So wait - -what you're saying is that there IS no Goddess of pizza and beer?

Anonymous said...

Sadly, no. Because in my world, there would be. (Cider, not beer, but still...)

Tracy Bermeo (A2Z Mommy) said...

Friday is for Pizza and Beer in my house too! I like those Norse Gods.

Deb R.H. said...

I only knew about Wednesday and Thursday! Thanks for the rest. :)