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. Blade -  March 12, 2015 - 8:25 am

    Mars was the Greek ancient god of war. Not, the ancient roman god of war.

    • Melody -  March 12, 2015 - 3:23 pm

      Mars was the Roman god of war. The Greek god of war was Ares.

    • Brian Keith Durham -  March 12, 2015 - 5:17 pm

      Ares was the Greek god of war, Mars his Roman counterpart.

    • Bill -  March 12, 2015 - 5:45 pm

      Mars was Roman, Ares was Greek.

    • Mike -  March 13, 2015 - 11:50 am

      No, that’s Ares. Mars (Martius) was a Roman god.

    • Laura -  March 13, 2015 - 12:42 pm

      That’s incorrect. He was Roman and his Greek Equivalent was Ares.

    • Elizabeth -  March 13, 2015 - 11:25 pm

      Ares is the Ancient Greek god of war. Mars was indeed the name of the ancient Roman God of war.

    • Simone -  March 14, 2015 - 12:18 pm

      Ares was the Greek god of war. Mars was the Roman version of Ares, so that makes Mars a Roman god.

    • Mythpunk -  March 15, 2015 - 5:47 pm

      No, the Greeks had Ares. The Romans had Mars.

    • Josh -  March 16, 2015 - 12:08 pm

      No, Ares was the Greek god of war. Mars was Roman.

    • Bluu -  March 16, 2015 - 12:23 pm

      Ares was the Greek Mars was the roman name for ares

    • squeak -  March 16, 2015 - 9:31 pm

      isn’t Ares the Greek god of war?

    • Whatevs -  March 17, 2015 - 11:55 am

      Um, no… Mars is the ancient Roman god of war while Aries and Athena are the Greek gods of war. Duh…

      • UNKNOWN -  March 18, 2015 - 3:19 pm


        • Mr lol -  March 19, 2015 - 5:07 pm


        • Derp -  March 20, 2015 - 6:35 am

          I CAN’T TAKE IT ANYMORE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Alfred Jones -  March 23, 2015 - 2:29 pm

      No, just no. Don’t make a comment if you don’t no facts learn your history and stop being an arrogant idiot.

    • TheTormentor -  March 24, 2015 - 9:06 am

      Ares is a punky Greek war god. Mars is his Roman counterpart.

    • Capt. Obvious -  March 26, 2015 - 10:38 pm

      Wait, I’m unclear – Which is Roman and which is Greek? Can someone repeat it for me again?

  2. Kathy Robertson -  March 3, 2015 - 10:18 am

    “that when clicked, bring you to another location on the web.”

    The verb should be take. The word “take” is often unused in favor of the word “bring” which is incorrect.

    It compares with using come instead of go

    Alos, “reason” is correct, not “reason why.”
    And when someone says ” the reason why is because,” they’re REALLY wrong!

    • CJ -  March 10, 2015 - 11:21 am

      The word should be “also”. The word “also” is often unused in favor of the word “alos” which is incorrect.

      “The verb should be take.”
      The verb “take” should be encapsulated in apostrophes. The punctuation mark “apostrophe” is often unused in favor of poor grammar, which is incorrect.

      • Capt. Obvious -  March 26, 2015 - 10:40 pm

        Your remark wins the internet! :)

      • RFB -  March 28, 2015 - 8:18 am

        As apostrophe is a single mark, whereas I think you wanted to suggest that the word “take” be encapsulated in quotation marks.

        We do strive for accuracy; do we not?

  3. PAL -  March 2, 2015 - 12:06 pm

    Another interesting fact which is related to my previous comment.
    PERVERT doesn’t mean someone who is obsessed with sex. It is actually someone who is oddly obsessed period. People just find it easier to call someone a pervert then to say they are sexually perverted.

    • PAL -  March 2, 2015 - 12:07 pm

      By the way i am sorry if i have just ruined your childhood. But if so you shouldn’t have been reading the comments on this article in the first pace.

  4. PAL -  March 2, 2015 - 12:00 pm

    That was all interesting. I didn’t know March was related to the roman god of war, which interestingly enough doesn’t seem to be everyone’s main point of concern.
    (In-case you didn’t get it i called the whole lot of you rabbit perverts.)

  5. wolf tamer and iron miner -  April 23, 2014 - 10:17 am

    edit: Don’t worry about it, Dictionary.com. My mom showed me this site called Google

    hint: turn off safesearch for dirty pictures ;)~**~~**~

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. Alex -  March 27, 2014 - 6:40 am


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

    those all said about rabbit and bunny

  10. 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.

  11. Tobi -  March 11, 2014 - 4:02 pm

    stupidity nowadays

  12. E -  March 11, 2014 - 2:20 pm

    hic article mihi placet

  13. 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!!?

  14. 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

  15. 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.

    • PAL -  March 2, 2015 - 12:03 pm

      You misunderstand, the title is meant to mislead us.
      They mean to say the 2 words are derived from the same roman god.

    • Mythpunk -  March 15, 2015 - 5:59 pm

      French is a romantic language (that’s “coming from the Romans,” not “spoken in sexy stories”). So wouldn’t the Old French verb “marchier” most likely come from the latin “martius” anyway?

  16. 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’”?

    • Capt. Obvious -  March 26, 2015 - 10:43 pm

      I believe that it is correctly in quotes because the author is referring to the word “marching” rather than to the phenomenon of marching.

  17. 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.

  18. 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?

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

    Julius Caesar was actually stoned to death not stabbed

  20. Lily -  March 6, 2014 - 6:28 pm

    March 4th- National Marching band day
    March 4th = March Fourth = March Forth

  21. Hammy -  March 6, 2014 - 3:15 pm


    • Capt. Obvious -  March 26, 2015 - 10:44 pm


  22. Hammy -  March 6, 2014 - 3:11 pm

    No march has nothing to do with marching >:(

  23. wolf tamer and iron miner -  March 5, 2014 - 5:10 am

    Now I know what to say if anyone asks me whether there’s any connection between March and marching… :)

    Hares are larger and have longer ears than rabbits. But rabbits and bunnies are the same. Many people also keep rabbits/bunnies as pets, but no one that I know of keeps a hare as a pet.


  24. C. Pierce -  March 4, 2014 - 9:14 am

    The article says:

    …a female hare may be seen “boxing” (striking another hare with their paws) off a male to prevent an act of procreation…

    Since it’s a female hare, shouldn’t it say “striking another hare with HER paws”?

  25. Bushra -  March 4, 2014 - 7:19 am

    leave it whatever you guys are talking and commenting on this blog I like the Topic mrching is deprived from march ? I love this month specially 3rd march in India in this month you’ all celebrate holi ,colourful fest . blossom are ready… I have a plant in my house It gives flower in this month only ……..that’s my B day month haha….

  26. asfsafa -  March 4, 2014 - 6:43 am


  27. Worm89 -  March 24, 2013 - 6:22 pm

    Watevs hu cares

  28. Worm89 -  March 24, 2013 - 6:22 pm


  29. Jessica Jung -  March 24, 2013 - 3:05 am

    * the first one was a typo

  30. Jessica Jung -  March 24, 2013 - 3:05 am

    rabbit = stereotype that is too mainstream
    bunny = the fluffy things little kids call them
    hare = what alice in wonderland calls them

  31. Jessica Jung -  March 24, 2013 - 3:04 am

    rabbits = stereotype that is too mainstream
    bunnies = the fluffy things little things call them
    hare = what alice in wonderland calls them

  32. akram -  March 22, 2013 - 3:42 am

    I just love this dilshan

  33. J -  March 21, 2013 - 8:37 am

    By the way, article’s headline: Is there a connection between March the month and “marching?” Question mark belongs outside the quotation mark, right?

  34. derp -  March 19, 2013 - 3:05 pm

    lol that was weird

  35. derp -  March 19, 2013 - 3:04 pm

    hey guys isnt mars like a planet?

    • Capt. Obvious -  March 26, 2015 - 10:46 pm

      Do you mean is Mars similar to a planet, or does Mars look favorably upon a planet?

  36. Håkan -  March 18, 2013 - 1:55 pm

    Hares should be just as edible as rabbits.

  37. Crazy person -  March 13, 2013 - 5:23 pm

    OK, this post is on March and you guys are talking bunny

  38. Lucis Ferre -  March 11, 2013 - 9:06 pm

    Hares are enormous compared to rabbits. A full grown hare can weigh more than 20 lbs, or 10 kilos.

  39. William bedford -  March 11, 2013 - 6:49 am

    Rabbits are edible. Hares aint.

    • Capt. Obvious -  March 26, 2015 - 10:47 pm

      Apparently you just weren’t hungry enough.

  40. Kenyl -  March 9, 2013 - 8:40 am

    It feels good to know about rabbits and hares….time for some delicious rabbit meal

  41. Carol -  March 5, 2013 - 10:20 am

    So if the month “March” was derived from “Marching” that’s why National Marching Band Day must be in March! Ah ha, I understand this now.

    • Mike hayward -  March 12, 2015 - 7:04 pm

      The month of March was, in fact, named after Mars, the God of war. It was about this time of the year (early Spring) that the weather turned warmer and men, who had been confined to their homes and huts for the previous three cold months were anxious to get out in the fresh air and do battle.

  42. Ken G. -  March 4, 2013 - 2:01 pm

    Today is also the only commanding day of the year.

  43. blob -  March 3, 2013 - 10:43 am


  44. blob -  March 3, 2013 - 10:42 am

    HA HA BLOB OBLITERATED YOU :s :s :s :s :s:s :) :) :) :) :):) :) :) :) :) :) :)

  45. blob -  March 3, 2013 - 10:41 am

    :) :) :) :) blob outps i am going to obliterate yoy:S:S:S:S:S:S:S

  46. Kris -  March 20, 2011 - 5:04 pm

    You guys at Dictionary.com must do something about those comments that are not intended to do any good to the article and meant only to play spoilsport; you must devise a way wherein these bad comments get filtered out and not displayed on the site.

  47. guess who? -  March 7, 2011 - 3:47 pm

    how did “march” lead to rabbits and hares?

  48. Lefty -  March 3, 2011 - 10:59 am

    Rabbit or Hare Stew is Good!!

  49. louis paiz -  March 3, 2011 - 9:39 am

    marcharse means gone march start walking marcho is gone for me it means the time to update files chose the best and say to the ones that do not attein grandeur go.for some reason march first is the time or the day when best leaders are chosen.every year on march first i say let see who is kissing the dust today which means who is leaving could be at home or abroad. thanks

  50. Alchemiste -  March 3, 2011 - 7:08 am

    Was Bugs Bunny a rabbit or a hare? Since he’s so big and has such long ears, I’m guessing he’s a hare.

  51. Cyberquill -  March 2, 2011 - 4:43 pm

    I always thought it was named after either Peggy or Frederick.

  52. DT -  March 2, 2011 - 4:03 pm

    Thanks for the info, I haven’t really thought about where the month names came from before.. And what’s with the comments all about hares and rabbits? LOL

  53. Cheyenne -  March 2, 2011 - 2:08 pm

    Rabbits are smaller than hares, I believe, and they are in fact a different species. And bunnies are pets.

  54. Alan Turner -  March 2, 2011 - 9:23 am

    In Britain it is all very simple. A rabbit, well many of them, dig burrows and procreate 24/7/365 and have many babies in a litter, perhaps seven or there abouts. The young are deaf, blind and hairless.
    Hares do not dig at all but make nest on the ground and have only two babies (leverets) per year which are born ready to go right from the start.
    Rabbits have short ears and hares have long ears.
    Bunnies are pets. Ask Playboy.

  55. Randomada -  March 2, 2011 - 9:13 am

    That is just hilarious. Information such as this just brightens my day even more, though I’m sure the poor guy is rolling over in his grave because of this. (Wait… Weren’t they cremated?)

  56. alija gonzalez -  March 2, 2011 - 8:51 am

    like reading this is boring i go to saint raymond academy

    i dont l

  57. roflmoacopterlololloololol -  March 2, 2011 - 8:36 am

    why are you all so into it omg thats stupid

  58. DunnyBrat -  March 2, 2011 - 8:32 am

    Reply to Trixia:

    Rabbits and hares are from the “lagomorph” family. There are only 3 members of this family – the third member is the pika.

    Here are the main differences between hares and rabbits:

    Hares are generally larger than rabbits, with longer legs and ears.

    Hares give birth to “leverets” born with a full coat of hair and open-eyes. Rabbits give birth to “kits” born blind and hairless.

    Another difference is, hares are generally solitary animals, whereas rabbits live in large family groups.

    Also “bunny” is a general term for “rabbit” much in the same way as “kitty” is for a cat.

    Hope this helps :)

    • Capt. Obvious -  March 26, 2015 - 10:49 pm

      The pika, on the other hand, is bright yellow and emits a strong electrical attack. I saw a documentary on TV about it. At least, I think that’s what it was.

  59. Abigail -  March 2, 2011 - 8:31 am


  60. Esteban -  March 2, 2011 - 8:22 am

    You’re Late For TEA!!!!!!

  61. Raven Darkwing -  March 2, 2011 - 8:11 am

    I think that there is a difference between a hare and a rabbit. But a rabbit and a bunny are the same thing. This article is very interesting. And rcp, I agree with you.

    -Raven Darkwing
    9th grade

  62. lmao -  March 2, 2011 - 7:59 am

    Somebody tell me how to put smiley faces down

  63. lmao -  March 2, 2011 - 7:57 am

    My first period class is almost over, and i;m about to have to leave. comment

  64. rpc -  March 1, 2011 - 8:06 pm

    I’m assuming then, that a rabbit and a hare are different species because I’ve heard people say that couples who are having many children are “breeding like rabbits”. Whereas “breeding like hares sounds like a dangerous prospect for the males. But then maybe they find the procreating is worth the beating.

  65. ember -  March 1, 2011 - 7:48 pm

    my web is about how you can help abused animals

  66. Trixia -  March 1, 2011 - 7:25 pm

    I never knew that females hares “boxed” off males trying to copulate…this changes everything! Bunnies aren’t just cool, they’re super cool!! And just wondering, are there any differences between a “hare,” “rabbit,” and “bunny”?


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