Why are June marriages considered lucky?

March 27, 2017 | Author: | Posted in General Knowledge

In the United States and Canada as well as in many other countries June is the favorite marriage month; in New Zealand and Australia as well as some other countries in the Southern Hemisphere, where the seasons are reversed, the favorite marriage month is December.

The belief that June marriages are likely to be lucky is believed to be a relic of ancient superstition and mythology. Some authorities suggest that the season of the year corresponding to our June may have been the natural mating period for human beings in primitive times.

“Prosperity to the man and happiness to the maid when married in June” was a proverb in ancient Rome. It was popularly supposed that the month of June was named in honor of Juno, whose festival was held on the first of that month, Juno, the wife of Jupiter, was not only the guardian of the female sex from birth to death but also the patroness of happy marriages.

May, supposedly named after the Roman goddess Maia, is regarded by the superstitious as unpropitious for marriages. “Marry in May and you’ll rue the day,” is an old proverb, and a gruesome but ancient Scottish saying runs:

From the marriages in May
All the bairns die an decay.

The belief that May marriages are likely to be unlucky is believed to be also a relic of ancient superstition and mythology. Pagan Rome believed that the souls of the dead hovered about as malevolent nocturnal spirits known as lemures.

The chief feast of the lemures was the Lemuria, held on May 9, 11 and 13. On those dates the head of the household made midnight offerings to placate the angry spirits. Because of the celebration of the festival of the unhappy dead in this month May came to be regarded as unlucky for marriages among the Romans.

Whether the months of June and May were actually named after the goddesses Juno and Maia is an unsettled question. Ovid has Juno say that June was named expressly in her honor; but since June and May were dedicated respectively to youth and old age, some authorities derive the names from Latin juniores, comparative plural of juvenis, meaning “young,” and majores, comparative plural of magnus, “aged” or “old.” Others suppose June to be derived from Junius, a Roman family name.

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