The Day of Mars

March 15, 2011 | By | 2 Replies More

Today (3/15/2011) is Mars’ day of the week and Mars’ day of the year. Tuesday is named for Teiwaz, the Germanic name for Mars. It’s ironically more obvious to anglophones in Romance languages such as French: Mardi. That is because the English name for the planet came from the Romans via the original western language of science, Latin. (Wiki Tuesday).

March is more obviously the month named for Mars. And the middle of the month, the Ides of March, is the traditional Roman day of the festival of Mars. The date gained new infamy when Caesar was assassinated on the day of the war god celebration.

But for current generations, Mars is more than just a dot in the sky, a harbinger of war. We have millions of pictures taken from its surface, and more from its orbit. We have taken and analyzed samples of its soil and air. We know more about Mars than any other place where man has not yet set foot. In fact, we know the surface of Mars better than we know the surface of the moon! We live in an age of miracles.

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Category: Education, History, Whimsy

About the Author ()

A convoluted mind behind a curly face. A regular traveler, a science buff, and first generation American. Graying of hair, yet still verdant of mind. Lives in South St. Louis City. See his personal website for (too much) more.

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  1. Erich Vieth says:

    Dan: In my law office I have two large framed photos of the surface of Mars from the rovers. People comment on their lonely beauty regularly, then they usually guess that they must be photos from the desert southwest of the U.S. They are startled to learn that they are Martian landscapes. Courtesy of NASA. http://marsrover.nasa.gov/gallery/press/spirit/20

  2. Dan Klarmann says:

    I considered and rejected the idea of using an image taken by a rover because few would recognize it as (very) foreign soil.

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