Sunday, January 15, 2006

Ante Diem XVII Kalendas Februarias

Modern Date : January 16th Market Day

Ante Diem XVII Kalendas Februarias
Seventeenth Day to the Kalends of February

This is one of the dies comitiales when committees of citizens could vote on political or criminal matters.

This day was sometimes known as the Concordia, or the day set aside to honor Concordia, a goddess who was the personification of harmony and concord. Several temples in Rome were dedicated specifically to this goddess. In art, Concordia was depicted sitting, wearing a long cloak and holding onto a patera (sacrificial bowl) and a cornucopia. Sometimes, she is shown standing between two members of the Royal House shaking hands.

On this day in 27 BCE Octavian was granted the title "Augustus" which means "revered" in honor of the great peace and order he had established throughout the empire.

Columella says of this day, "The sun passes into Aquarius: the Lion begins to set in the morning: there is a southwest or sometimes a south wind with rain."

Arcadius was made Augustus this day (or the 19th) in 383 AD. He later succeeded to the throne of the Eastern Roman empire.

Birthday of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King (1929).

This month is sacred to Janus, the god of Beginnings.

Mattu-Pongal is the third day of Pongal, dedicated to the worship and veneration of cattle (mattu). The horns of the cattle are decorated with turmeric and kumkum, and small bells and flowers are hung around their neck. After the cattle have been paraded through the streets, the pongal that was been offered to the local deities is given to the cattle to eat.

Eve of St Anthony
In Abruzzo, Italy, men and boys used to go through the town singing songs about St Anthony's battles with the Devil and asking for donations of wood for a huge bonfire. These fires were lit all over Italy at crossroads, in courtyards and on church piazze on the eve of St. Anthony. In Fara Filiorum Petri, in Abruzzo, they tie reeds into bundles called farchie that rise sixty feet high, while in other places, the bonfire is made of vine branches lashed together and mounded in a pyramid. The bonfires supposedly encourage warmth so the seeds will grow, and the ashes have fertilizing power.