Is There a Connection Between March the Month and “Marching”?

Hand with calender.

The name March is derived from the Roman Martius named after Mars, the Roman god of war. In ancient Rome, March 1st marked the first day of spring, which coincided with the beginning of the calendar year and the start of the military campaign season—which may explain why soldiers “march into battle.” The Roman ruler, Numa Pompilius, added January and February to the calendar thus making March the third month of the year. While many have adopted the Gregorian calendar, some cultures and religions still celebrate the start of the New Year on March 1st.

(Is it true there used to be one more month called Mercedonius? The accurate answer is sometimes. Here’s the reason why.)

Hares mate during the month of March and a female hare may be seen “boxing” (striking another hare with her paws) off a male to prevent an act of procreation – hence “Mad as a March hare”—a phrase that appeared for the first time in Sir Thomas More’s “The supplycacyon of soulys,” published in 1529. Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, under the pseudonym Lewis Carroll, also referenced this annual event in 1865’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (often shortened to Alice in Wonderland) and the passage: “The March hare…as this is May, it won’t be raving mad—at least not so mad as it was in March.”

The Ides of March is a reference to the date Julius Caesar was stabbed to death in 44 B.C. and is observed on the 15th day of the month. Julius Caesar was many things good and bad, but did he deserve to have the month of July named after him? Read our explanation of the mess that defined the Roman calendar before Julius Caesar, here.

Scientists at Washington University in St. Louis Target Biology.

Health & Medicine Week January 17, 2011 Scientists discuss in ‘Single-cell suction recordings from mouse cone photoreceptors’ new findings in Biology. “Rod and cone photoreceptors in the retina are responsible for light detection. In darkness, cyclic nucleotide-gated (CNG) channels in the outer segment are open and allow cations to flow steadily inwards across the membrane, depolarizing the cell,” researchers in the United States report (see also Biology). here test flash player

“Light exposure triggers the closure of the CNG channels, blocks the inward cation current flow, and thus results in cell hyperpolarization. Based on the polarity of photoreceptors, a suction recording method was developed in 1970s that, unlike the classic patch-clamp technique, does not require penetrating the plasma membrane. Drawing the outer segment into a tightly-fitting glass pipette filled with extracellular solution allows recording the current changes in individual cells upon test-flash exposure. However, this well-established ‘outer-segment-in (OS-in)’ suction recording is not suitable for mouse cone recordings, because of the low percentage of cones in the mouse retina (3%) and the difficulties in identifying the cone outer segments. Recently, an inner-segment-in (IS-in) recording configuration was developed to draw the inner segment/nuclear region of the photoreceptor into the recording pipette,” wrote J.S. Wang and colleagues, Washington University in St. Louis. web site test flash player

The researchers concluded: “In this video, we will show how to record from individual mouse cone photoresponses using single-cell suction electrode.” Wang and colleagues published their study in the Journal of Visualized Experiments (Single-cell suction recordings from mouse cone photoreceptors. Journal of Visualized Experiments, 2010;(35):).

For additional information, contact J.S. Wang, Washington University in St. Louis, Dept. of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, School of Medicine USA.


  1. A Great Big World -  April 13, 2014 - 8:31 pm

    Say something, I’m giving up on you I’ll be the one, if you want me to

    • Jack -  April 13, 2014 - 8:32 pm

      Anywhere I would’ve followed you Say something, I’m giving up on you

  2. Michael -  March 27, 2014 - 7:54 am

    Aspie, there are Roman coins inscribed with the date Ides of March and showing a cap of liberty flanked by two daggers. Suetonius Life if Julius Caesar, passage 82, describes his stabbing. Good enough for me.

  3. Alex -  March 27, 2014 - 6:40 am


  4. Thinh -  March 17, 2014 - 9:45 pm

    those all said about rabbit and bunny

  5. AspieWriter -  March 11, 2014 - 4:05 pm

    History is a theoretical practice. There are many recordings on how Caesar died- I heard that he was stabbed- but there is no actual proof. My point: don’t call out someone unless you can prove what you are saying is true.

  6. Tobi -  March 11, 2014 - 4:02 pm

    stupidity nowadays

  7. E -  March 11, 2014 - 2:20 pm

    hic article mihi placet

  8. I want that coin! -  March 11, 2014 - 11:32 am

    Sooooo, what kind of coin is that in the picture? Can’t seem to find it anywhere, does anybody know!!?

  9. wolf tamer and iron miner -  March 11, 2014 - 7:30 am

    I know this post isn’t about the article but it is a message to Dictionary.com:

    Please make a gaming dictionary on this website. It would be very useful to gamers like me, when we want to look up a gaming term. If possible, maybe you could add a comment section for each word. Keep up the good work!

    Signed, wolf tamer and iron miner

  10. David -  March 10, 2014 - 2:05 pm

    The author of this article is misinforming all of us. He or she should read the derivation on this website or in any dictionary. The verb march, and the noun usage of the same, are from the Middle French march(i)er and Old French marchier, which mean to tread or move. They are not related to the name of the month, which, yes, comes from Martius and the Roman god Mars.

  11. wolf tamer and iron miner -  March 10, 2014 - 3:33 am

    Why is the word “marching” in quotation marks in the title of this article? Shouldn’t it be “Is There a Connection Between March the Month and Marching” rather than “Is…the Month and ‘Marching’”?

  12. read a book.com -  March 8, 2014 - 9:43 am

    Critic, you were up to early, go back to bed. It is clearly documented that Julius Caesar was stabbed to death, by ones calling themselves the liberators.

  13. Jen -  March 8, 2014 - 5:18 am

    My kitty (8 months old) boxes with my son and my boyfriend whenever they try to pet her but she doesn’t with me…I wonder if it’s for the similar reason as the mad hare in March?

  14. Critic -  March 7, 2014 - 6:48 am

    Julius Caesar was actually stoned to death not stabbed

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