Origins of the names of the months

Only a few names of the month were actually derived from Roman deities; most simply came from the numbers of the months or — in two cases — in honor of Roman emperors.


Named after the Roman god of beginnings and endings Janus. Latin Januarius (mensis).


The name either derives from the old-Italian god Februus or else from februa, signifying the festivals of purification celebrated in Rome during this month. Latin Februaris (mensis).


This is the first month of the Roman year. It is named after the Roman god of war, Mars. Latin Martius (mensis).


Called Aprilis, from aperire, "to open." Possibly because it is the month in which the buds begin to open.


The third month of the Roman calendar. The name probably comes from Maiesta, the Roman goddess of honor and reverence. Latin Maius (mensis).


The fourth month was named in honor of Juno. However, the name might also come from iuniores (young men; juniors) as opposed to maiores (grown men; majors) for May, the two months being dedicated to young and old men. Latin Junius (mensis).


It was the month in which Julius Caesar was born, and named Julius in his honor in 44 BCE, the year of his assassination. Also called Quintilis (fifth month). Latin Julius (mensis).


Originally this month was called Sextilis (from sextus, "six"), but the name was later changed in honor of the first of the Roman emperors, Augustus (because several fortunate events of his life occurred during this month).


The name comes from septem, "seven."


The name comes from octo, "eight."


The name comes from novem, "nine."


The name comes from decem, "ten."