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1102021.  Mon Nov 17, 2014 9:06 am Reply with quote

"Monday" comes from the Old English "mōndæg", literally meaning "moon's day". "Montag" comes from the late Proto-Germanic "mēniniz dagaz", meaning "day of the moon" - as does "maandag", "mandag", "måndag", "maanantai" and "mánadagur". "Lundi" comes from the Latin "Lūnae dīēs", meaning "day of the moon", as does "lunes", "lunedi" and "dydd Llun". In Thai, "วันจันทร์" ('wanjan') comes from Sanskrit चन्द्र ('candra'), and means "moon day". The Hindi "सोमवार" ('Somavār') comes from Sanskrit सोम (Soma), a Hindu lunar god. Japanese and Korean both use the old Chinese "月曜日" meaning "day of the moon" - the Japanese say "getsuyōbi", meaning 'day associated with the moon', and the Koreans say "woryoil", from 월, 'wol', meaning 'moon'.

Meanwhile, in Russian, понедельник means "after Sunday", as does понедељак (Serbian), poniedziałek (Polish), and other Slavic languages. In Azerbaijan, Monday is "bazar ertəsi", literally "following Sunday". In Ojibwe, they say "ishkwaa-anami'egiizhigad", literally meaning "after-prayer-day".

Perhaps least inspiring, Vietnamese for Monday is "thứ hai": "second". In Maltese it's "it-Tnejn", which comes from the Arabic "اِثْنَان" and means "two". In Portugese they say "segunda-feira". In Greek it's "Δευτέρα": "second".

Mondays can be black, blue, big, clean, mad, fat, and wet. There have been at least six Black Mondays in history: the most recent two were declared in 2009, when only 26% of the Berlin S-Bahn's trains were in operation, and July 2012, when India suffered the largest power outtage in history. The earliest Black Mondays were in 1209, when 500 Bristolians were killed by the O'Byrne clan in Dublin, and in 1360, when an estimated 1,000 English soldiers were killed by lightning and hail in a storm during the Hundred Year's War.

Perhaps the most depressing use of “Black Monday” was by John Bell Williams to describe the ruling of the Supreme Court that segregated schools were unconstitutional. In a similar vein, the Monday Club is a UK political group described as “far-right” whose links with the tories were severed in 2001 due to their continued racist campaigns.

Blue Monday is the name given to the most depressing day of the year, according to a formula published under the name of Cliff Arnall. When the blue Monday formula was reported to have been substantially pre-written by a PR company and money offered to academics to put their names to it, Cardiff University publicly distanced themselves from Mr Arnall, who had been employed as a part-time tutor.

Blue Monday is often said to be the last Monday of January, but “Handsel Monday”, in Scotland and Northern England, refers to the first Monday of the year. Traditionally, small gifts were given on this day.

Easter Monday is known as Bright Monday in Eastern Orthodox tradition, and Wet Monday in Poland. Eastern churches start Lent on Ash Monday, also known as Pure Monday, Clean Monday, or Green Monday. Back in the West, there is Shrove Monday, also known as Rose Monday, Merry Monday, Collop Monday, and, in New Orleans “Lundi Gras” - Fat Monday.

Perhaps best of all was the English tradition of Saint Monday, when workers would take the day off due to having money and food left over from payday on Saturday. Since the introduction of weekends, this practice has largely been forgotten.

References* (and various translated pages)
Bad Science - Ben Goldacre

ETA: Oops, I forgot to include - also good to read anyway (but then I do love Dr Goldacre)

* I'm sorry they are almost all Wikipedia!

1102031.  Mon Nov 17, 2014 10:07 am Reply with quote

I don't like Mondays.


1102042.  Mon Nov 17, 2014 12:17 pm Reply with quote

Tell me why!

Big Monday is apparently a basketball show on American television, and Mad Monday is an excuse to get drunk in Australia. (Not that they really need an excuse, from my experience of Australians.)

As for the Polish Wet Monday or Lany Poniedziałek, this is a tradition which goes back five hundred years or more. On Easter Monday, boys pour buckets of water over girls they fancy, and then whip them with willow twigs. (Legend has it that this bit comes from a Southern European custom which used palm leaves. There are no palm trees in Poland, so they had to make do with willow.)

A girl could avoid a dousing by giving the boy a painted egg; this may still happen in villages but city girls don't get away so easily. Mind you, city girls in the modern world are equally at liberty to throw water over boys they like; in the olden days that wasn't allowed until the following day.

By now, most people over about 30 would have a sense of humour failure if you emptied a bucket of water over them. Dousing kids is considered not quite fair, so it's mainly the 16-30 age group who have fun getting wet for a day. As you can perhaps imagine with that age group, there's a tendency for them not to wear very much while throwing water at each other.

Slovakia and Hungary also mess about in this way on Easter Monday, and so does the Polish community in Buffalo NY.

And then there was today in my life. That belongs on another thread really, but just another Manic Monday ...

1102044.  Mon Nov 17, 2014 12:33 pm Reply with quote

Thanks suze!

Although I did know the first two, I realised I had run out of words (I'm already over but I figured they might allow 10% either way) and stopped, which is a shame because Wet Monday is definitely QI, and I wish I had read more about it originally!

1102052.  Mon Nov 17, 2014 2:10 pm Reply with quote

My Hungarian friend tells me that over Easter the boys will sometimes throw water over the girls but this is beginning to become frowned upon. Instead some of them will spray the girls with perfume. Last time she was in Hungary over Easter she went out and bought a few cheap perfumes and gave them to the guys she thought would come after her so that she had one consistent smell rather than lots of different fragrances.

1104614.  Mon Dec 08, 2014 6:24 am Reply with quote

Mad Monday seems to relate to the Australian rules football teams dress up events after the finals in early October. A few times over the last few years, players have been in strife for dressing up as well known celebrities and victims, etc.


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