It’s the first day of October, the tenth month of the year. Most words beginning with ‘oct’ have something to do with the number eight – octopus (eight legs), octogenarian (in their 80s), octagon (eight sides). So what has October got to do with the number eight? Well, to the Ancient Romans, October was the eighth month – their year began in March, not January.
Let’s find out more about the tenth month of the year, with this list of October facts:
- October was known to the Anglo-Saxons by two names. ‘Winterfylleth’ (Winter Fullness) and ‘Wyn Monath’ (Wine Month)
- In Welsh, October is ‘Hydref’ which refers to the lowing of cattle – well, it gets cold in October out on them there pastures!
- Two events we associate with October actually occurred in other months. Russia’s October Revolution took place in November and Germany’s Oktoberfest begins in September
- Here in the UK October is the Awareness Month for Lupus, breast cancer, and domestic violence. It’s also National Black History Month, Cholesterol Month, Walk to School Month and School Library Month
- In the USA October is National Popcorn Month, Pizza Month, Sausage Month and Pork Month. You can see how our cultures differ!
- There’s a good deal of weather lore associated with October. A rainy month means December will be windy. Chubby animals and lots of berries on the trees mean we can expect a cold winter. And if October’s full moon does not bring frost then we should remain frost free until November’s full moon
There have been a few world-changing events which happened in October. Here are a handfull:
- 1066 – The Battle of Hastings brings Norman rule to Anglo-Saxon England
- 1642 – Battle of Edgehill shapes England’s democratic future
- 1769 – New Zealand discovered by English explorer, James Cook
- 1805 – French and Spanish Navies defeated by Nelson in the Battle of Trafalgar
- 1834 – The Houses of Parliament are burned to the ground. The current ones, including Big Ben, were built as a replacement
- 1990 – East and West Germany are reunited as one country
I hope that you enjoyed this list of October facts. If you are interested in the months of the year you can also read about September here in Nature Matters. Why not take a look?