September has the longest month name at 9 letters long, beating out February, November and December that all contain 8 letters each, with May being the shortest month name at 3 letters. But there's a lot more to September than its 9 letters. Here's what you should know about the month that issues in the first day of Fall.
September has nine letters in it. It's also the ninth month of the year.
Numerologically speaking, 'nine' is a power number. Out of all the single-digit numbers, it appears last. It can represent both endings and beginnings, a surrendering to inevitable completions and an opportunity for growth through something new.
This may be why in September there are more births than on any other month and contains several of the most common birthdays.
It may also be why, agriculturally speaking, September is historically known as The Month of Harvest. The Harvest Moon, which is a full moon that occurs close to the solar equinox frequently falls in September. What is a harvest if not a symbol of culmination and completion, a time when we literally reap what we sow?
Ever heard the joke, “Why is six so scared? Because 9 ate 7.” Well, when it comes to the origins of September, that's exactly what happened.
Our lives are regulated by the Roman calendar, which is why the word 'September' comes from the Latin, 'septem' meaning seven. Why you might ask, would the ninth month of the year be called 'Seven'? (Could those Romans not count?) The short answer is that until Julius Caesar's calendar reform introduced in 45 B.C (which added two extra months to the year) the Romans had only ten months in their calendar starting with Spring on 1 March, which made September the seventh month. And when January and February were added, and September became the ninth month, the name September stuck.
Here's a fun fact: September is spelled with 9 total letters but with 7 different letters -- numbers which curiously correspond to both its position in the calendar (9th month) and to its root meaning (septem). No other month can do this trick!
September is jam-packed with a laughable list of national days so arbitrary as to be memorable. A few of the most random are:
National Happy Cat Month (which begs the question: “How do felines feel the rest of the year?”)
September 2: World Coconut Day
September 19: International Talk Like a Pirate Day (“Arr Matey, I'd rather walk the plank!”)
September 24: National Punctuation Day (Time to dot your I's and cross your T's.)
But the month also marks some poignant days genuinely worth diarizing:
September 8: International Literacy Day raises awareness of literacy as a basic human right and an important part of the UN's Sustainable Developmental Goals agenda.
September 10: World Suicide Prevention Day (WSPD), organized by the International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP) and co-sponsored by the World Health Organization (WHO).
September 11: 9/11 Remembrance Day pays tribute to those killed or injured in the September 11, 2001, terrorist attack.
September 17: Labour Day, formally known as Constitution Day and Citizenship Day, commemorates the signing on September 17, 1787, of the American Constitution.
Those who celebrate their birthday (or 'solar return') in the month of September are born either under the star sign of Virgo (up to the 23rd of September) or under the star sign of Libra (after the 23rd of September).
Virgo is an earth sign historically represented by the goddess of wheat and agriculture. (September is Harvest Month after all.)
Virgos are detail-orientated, logical, practical systematic and deeply rooted in the material world. They are also perfectionists, always striving to upskill through diligent and consistent effort.
Virgo is ruled by Mercury, the planetary messenger and God of communication. The Virgo mind operates like a computer; resourceful, problem-solving, organizing chaos into clear concepts. Virgos use their high intellect to provide workable solutions and to improve broken systems.
If a Virgo has a weakness, it's the need to be meticulous in everything they do. The challenge for Virgos is to recognize the beauty in imperfection and to accept that flaws are not the same as faults.
Above all, Virgos are driven to help. Selfless to the point of being self-sacrificing, they are kind, supportive friends and loyal lovers.
Libra is an air element and is represented by the scales, a symbol that speaks to the Libran pursuit of equilibrium and harmony in all things. Librans love symmetry. Ruled by Venus, the planet of love, they are the aesthetes of the zodiac and are happiest surrounded by beauty.
Nothing is more important to a Libran than relationships. They seek out harmonious partnerships and are drawn to people with elegance and personal style. Physical appearances are important to Librans.
If Librans have a weakness, it's that their open-mindedness and need to keep the peace at all times can make them indecisive and ambivalent. Librans are challenged to block out all external opinions so that they can hear the soft voice of their own intuition.
As for their greatest strength, Librans are masters of conflict resolution, able to navigate their way through even the most fraught social situation by effortlessly turning on the charm.
Combine Virgo, ruled by Mercury the planet of communication and Libra, ruled by Venus, the planet of love and beauty and it's no wonder that Earth Wind & Fire wrote a song called September: “… say, do you remember? dancin' in September; golden dreams were shiny days…”
Groucho Marx once said, “My favorite poem is the one that starts, 'Thirty days hath September' because it actually tells you something.”
But the numerology, astrology and symbolism of September have a lot more to say: September, nine letters long; the season of earth-bound Virgo and air-sign Libra; the time of love, attraction, wisdom, harvest, completions, births and new beginnings, adds up to a lot more than the sum total of its 30 days.
There are five Romance languages that when translated, each have a very similar sounding word for September. But will this translated word for September still be the longest month name in that language? Let's find out.
In Spanish, September is translated as Septiembre.
In French, September is translated as Septembre.
In Italian, September is translated as Settembre.
In Romanian, September is translated as Septembrie.
In Portuguese, September is translated as Septiembre.
In Spanish, French, Italian, and Romanian the translated word for September in each respective language is also the longest month name.
However in Portuguese that's not the case. The longest month name in Portuguese is Fevereiro (February) at 9 characters long beating Setembro (September), Novembro (November), Dezembro (December) at 8 characters each.
We hope you learned a fun fact or two about September, the month with the longest name.
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