May in History
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About the Month of May
May is the 5th month of the year and has 31 days.
Season (Northern Hemisphere): Spring
Cinco de Mayo
National Teacher Day
National Physical Fitness and Sports Month
Asian American Heritage Month
Jewish American Heritage Month
Skin Cancer Awareness Month
National Bike Month
Symbols of May
- Birthstone: Emerald
- Flower: Lily of the Valley
- Zodiac signs: Taurus and Gemini
The month of May was named for the Greek goddess Maia. She was the goddess of fertility. The Romans had a similar goddess named Bona Dea. They held the festival for Bona Dea during the month of May.
The Romans called the month Maius. The name changed over the years. It was first called May in the 1400s near the end of the Middle Ages.
May in Other Languages
- Chinese (Mandarin) - wuyuè
- Danish - maj
- French - mai
- Italian - maggio
- Latin - Maius
- Spanish - mayo
Fun Facts about May
- Roman: Maius
- Saxon: Thrimilci
- Germanic: Wonne-mond
- It is the third and last month of the season of spring.
- The birthstone of May, the emerald, symbolizes success and love.
- May in the Northern Hemisphere is similar to November in the Southern Hemisphere.
- May was once considered a bad luck month to get married. There is a poem that says "Marry in May and you'll rue the day".
- In Old English May is called the "month of three milkings" referring to a time when the cows could be milked three times a day.
- The Indianapolis 500 car race is held each year during this month. The Kentucky Derby, the world's most famous horse race, is also held on the second Saturday of this month.
- The month of May is devoted to the Virgin Mary in the Catholic Church.
- The United Kingdom celebrates May as the National Smile Month.
- The last week of May is Library and Information Week.
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