The seven-day week and its meaning
The Babylonians marked time with lunar months. They proscribed some
activities during several days of the month, particularly the first -
the first visible crecent,
seventh - the waxing half moon,
fourteenth - the full moon,
nineteenth - dedicated to an offended goddess,
twenty-first - the waning half moon,
twenty-eigth - the last visible crecent,
twenty-nineth - the invisible moon, and
thirtieth (possibly) - the invisible moon.
The major periods are seven days, 1/4 month, long. This seven - day
period was later regularised and disassociated from the lunar month to
become our seven-day week.
The Greeks named the days week after the sun, the moon and the five
known planets, which were in turn named after the gods Ares, Hermes,
Zeus, Aphrodite, and Cronus. The Greeks called the days of the week the
Theon hemerai “days of the Gods”. The Romans substituted their
for the Greek gods, Mars, Mercury, Jove (Jupiter), Venus, and Saturn.
(The two pantheons are very similar.) The Germanic people generally
substituted roughly similar gods for the Roman gods,
Tiu (Twia), Woden, Thor, Freya (Fria), but did not substitute Saturn.
Sunday - Sun's day
Middle English sone(n)day or sun(nen)day
Old English sunnandæg “day of the sun”
Germanicsunnon - dagaz “day of the sun”
Latin -dies solis - “day of the sun”
Ancient Greek hemera heli(o)u, - “day of the sun”
Monday - Moon's day
Middle English - monday or mone(n)day
Old English - mon(an)dæg -' day of the moon'
Latin - dies lunae - 'day of the moon'
Ancient Greek - hemera selenes- 'day of the moon'
Tuesday - Tiu's day
Middle English - tiwesday or tewesday
Old English - tiwesdæg “Tiw's (Tiu's) day”
Latin - dies Martis 'day of Mars'
Ancient Greek - 'hemera Areos'- 'day of Ares'
Tiu (Twia) is the English/Germanic god of war and the sky. He is
identified with the Norse god Tyr
Mars is the Roman god of war.
Ares - the Greek god of war.
Wednesday - Woden's day
Middle English - wodnesday, wednesday, or wednesdai
Old English - wodnesdæg - 'Woden's day'
Latin - dies Mercurii - day of Mercury
Ancient Greek - hemera Hermu - day of Hermes
Woden is the chief Anglo-Saxon/Teutonic god. Woden is the leader of
the Wild Hunt. Woden is from 'wod' - 'violently insane + -'en'
“headship”. He is identified with the Norse Odin.
Mercury is the Roman god of commerce, travel, thievery, eloquence and
science. He is the messenger of the other gods.
Hermes is the Greek god of commerce, invention, cunning, and theft.
He is the messenger and herald of the other gods. He serves as patron of
travellers and rogues, and as the conductor of the dead to Hades.