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What’s in a name? Tuesday!

September 8, 2015

It’s the Tuesday after a long weekend, so you’re either feeling a little sluggish or refreshed and ready to get back to class. Just in case you’re in the first boat, here’s some trivia that might wake you up a bit. When you woke up this morning and groaned “Ugghhh, it’s Tuesday,” did you think about the fact that you were basically referring to a Norse god? You totally were! Over the next couple of weeks, we’ll explain to you how the days of the week got their names, which might just might make you hate Tuesdays a little less and love Fridays even more.

Civilizations have basically always named the days of the week after gods, starting with the Greeks. The Romans came along and substituted their gods for the ones to which the Greeks had referred, and then Europeans came along and did the same. Tuesday refers to Tiu, the English god of war and the sky (Lawrence Crowl, 1995). Tui is identified with a Norse god named Tyr, who was regarded in Old Norse literature as one of the principal gods of war alongside Thor and Odin (Marvel comic fans, those names should ring a bell!). Apparently, Tyr was so brave and honorable that he gave up his hand to the dangerous wolf Fenrir in order to secure the safety of the rest of the gods (Dan McCoy).  So rather than looking at Tuesday as the day that drags on between Monday and Wednesday, today you can be inspired to locate your inner warrior when it comes to school, work, or anything else that might be challenging you. That’s what Tyr would do. Tune in next week to find out what Wednesday is all about.

 

* The information here was collected from two websites: http://www.crowl.org/lawrence/time/days.html and http://norse-mythology.org/gods-and-creatures/the-aesir-gods-and-goddesses/tyr/. The second page, Norse Mythology for Smart People, has everything you could ever want to know about Norse mythology if you’re interested.

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