Ides of March

posted in: Holidays | 0

We often hear of the Ides of March, but what is it?

Dates back to the days of the Romans

Let’s travel back to the day of the Romans, who celebrated the Ides as the midpoint of the month, which falls in March on the 15th.

The Ides of each month was sacred to Juniper, the Roman’s supreme god.  Juniper’s high priest, the Flamen Dialis, would lead the Ides sheep in a procession down the main street of ancient Rome, until they arrived at the citadel where the sheep was then slaughtered.

The Ides of March also celebrated the Feast of Anna Perenna {the goddess of the year}, and concluded the ceremonies of the New Year.  {The New Year in Roman times began in March.}

This was a day of celebration with drinking, picnics and revelry for the common people.

In 44B.C., Julius Caesar was assassinated at a meeting of the Senate on the Ides of March.

Julius Caesar

Four years later, on the anniversary of Caesar’s death, Octavian executed over 300 individuals involved in the assassination.

The assassination of Caesar was a turning point in Roman History.

The Ides of March, originally celebrated the end of a two week celebration of the new year.

However, today it is more commonly associated with the death of Julius Caesar and his legacy. 
This is why we hear “beware of the des of March” the warning the soothsayer gave to Caesar, shortly before his death.

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