Thursday, 31 July 2014

The first day of August

Tomorrow is the first day of August . In Italy the holiday season is at its height. All the hotels are at their most expensive. Lots of businesses and shops close down. It is the holiday month . The days are getting shorter but the sun is still as hot and there is a festive mood in the air.
July received its name from Julius Caesar and August got its name from the Emperor Augustus (27Bc - 14AD). Augustus was born Gaius Octavius and then changed his name. he was Julius Caesar's great nephew. Supposedly the month of August was chosen to be named after him because something nice happened to him then, not because that was when he was born. Apparently July had thirty-one days and August originally only thirty. Another day was added to August in order that Augustus might not be in any respect inferior to Julius Caesar.
To herald in this  lovely month which makes you think of the playing on the beach, rambling in the mountains and boating on the lake, here is a verse by Revd. Combe Miller  (1745-1814)

Fairest of months! Ripe Summer's Queen,
The hey-day of the year
With robes that gleam with sunny sheen,
Sweet August doth appear.

Also just a short verse from Robert Burns which makes me think of the golden cornfields and wide open spaces of Scotland.

The moor-cock springs on whirring wings
Among the blooming heather,
Come, let us stray our gladsome way
And view the charms of Nature,
The rustling corn, the fruited thorn.
And every happy creature.

Happy August to all of you.

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