BEWARE OF THE IDES OF MARCH is the third month of the year of both the JULIAN and GREGORIAN calendars. It is the second of seven months to have a length of 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.

The name of MARCH comes from MARTUIS, 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 and FESTIVALS held in his honor during the month were mirrored by other in OCTOBER, when the season for these activities came to a close. MARTIUS remained the first month of the Roman calendar year perhaps as late as 153 BC, and several religious observances in the first half of the month were originally new year’s celebrations. MARCH’S birthstones are AQUAMARINE and BLOODSTONE. These stones symbolize COURAGE. Its birth flower is DAFFODIL. The zodiac signs for the month of March are PISCES until approximately March 20 and ARIES of approximately March 21 onward. ( Source: Https://en.m. wikipedia. Org)

The IDES OF MARCH (Latin: Idus Martial, Late Latin: Idus Matii) is the 74th day in Roman calendar, corresponding to 15 MARCH. It was marked by several religious observance and was a deadline for setting debts in ROME. (Https://en.m.wikipedia).

IDES. The Romans did not number each day a month from the first to the last day. Instead, they counted back from three fixed points of the months: the NONES (the 5th or 7th, eight days before the IDES, the IDES (the 13th for most months, but the 15th in March, July and October), and the KALENDS (1st of the following month). Originally, the IDES were supposed to be determined by the full moon, reflecting the lunar origin of the Roman calendar. In the earliest calendar, the IDES OF MARCH would have been the first full moon of the new year.

In addition to the monthly sacrifice, the IDES OF MARCH was also the occasion of the cast of ANNA PERENNA, a goddess of the year (LATIN annus whose festival originally concluded the ceremonies of the new year. The day was enthusiastically celebrated among the common people with picnics, drinking and revelry. One source from late antiquity also places the MAMURALLA on the IDES OF MARCH. This observance, which has ASPECTS, of SCAPEGOAT or ancient Greek PHARMAKUS RITUAL, involved BEATING AN OLD MAN dressed in animal skins and perhaps driving him from the city. The ritual may have been a new year festival representing the EXPULSION OF THE OLD MAN.

In the later imperial period, the IVES began a “HOLY WEEK” of festivals celebrating CYBELE and ATTIS being the day CANNA INTRAT ( “The Reed Enters’): when ATTIS was born and found among the reeds of a Phyrian river. He was discovered by SHEPHERDS or the goddess CYBELE, who was also known as the MAGNA MATER (“Great Mother”). A week later on 22 March, the solemn commemoration of Arbor intrat (“The Tree enters”) commemorated the death of ATTIS under a PINE TREE. A COLLEGE OF PRIESTS, the DENDROPHORO (“Tree bearers”) annually cut down a tree, hung from it an image of ATTIS and carried it to the people of the MAGNA MATER with lamentations. The day was formalized as part of the official Roman calendar under CLAUDIUS (d. 54 AD). A three-day period of mourning followed culminating with celebrating the REBIRTH OF ATTIS on 25 March, the date of the vernal equinox on the JULIAN CALENDAR.

In modern time, the IDES OF MARCH is best known as the date on which JULIUS CAESAR was ASSASSINATED in 44 BC. CAESAR was stabbed to death at a meeting of the Senate. As many as 60 conspirators, led by BRUTUS and CASSIUS, were involved. According to PLUTARCH, a SEER had warned what would come to Caesar on the IDES OF MARCH.

On his way to the THEATRE OF POMPEY, where he would be ASSASSINATED, CAESAR passed the SEER and JOKED, ” WELL, THE IDES OF MARCH ARE COME”, implying that the prophesy had not been fulfilled, to which THE SEER replied: “AYE, THEY ARE COME, BUT THEY ARE NOT GONE”.

WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE’s play ” JULIUS CAESAR” when CAESAR is warned by the soothsayer to “BEWARE THE IDES OF MARCH”. The Roman biographer SOTENIUS identifies the” SEER ” as a HARUSPEX named SPURINNA. CAESAR’s assassination opened the FINAL CHAPTER in the CRISIS OF THE ROMAN REPUBLIC.

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