March 15th – Beware the Ides of March!
In ancient Rome, the calendar year began on March 15. The 15th of each of month was known as the ides, from a Latin word that indicates division of a month. During the classical period, the month began on the night of the full moon, which was usually on the 13th or 15th of each month, depending on the season.
At any rate, back in 44 b.c., the legendary emperor Julius Caesar summoned members of the Senate to meet in the Theatre of Pompey on March 15. Previously, a soothsayer had warned Caesar to “beware the ides of March,” but since not much had happened that day, Caesar felt confident attending a Senate session. After all, the men of the Senate were loyal to him, so how much harm could he possibly come to?
Unfortunately, Caesar had enemies within his own Senate, and upon his arrival, several members of a group known as the Liberatores fell upon him and stabbed him to death. Some notable names were in the group, particularly Gaius Cassius Longinus and Marcus Junius Brutus, the son of Caesar’s lover.
They claimed that their actions were not treasonous, but in fact tyrannicide.
In 1599, when Shakespeare wrote his famous play, he made sure to include the seer’s cautionary line about being wary on the date, and thus the term “beware the ides of March” has come to bring about a sense of impending doom. He also attributed an equally famous line to the dying emperor, “Et tu, Brute? Then fall, Caesar.”
Falling just a week or so before the Ostara holiday, some members of Religio Romana celebrate an ides ritual each month, because the ides are sacred to the god Jupiter. The season dictated how Jupiter was honored – for instance, on the ides of September, there was a big public feast celebrating the grape harvest. Ides celebrations throughout the year often involved the sacrifice of a sheep in Jupiter’s name, although at some point that sheep may have been replaced by fish.
Interestingly, long before Caesar came along, the celebration of the ides of March was shared by Jupiter with a now-obscure Roman deity called Anna Perenna; she was most likely one of the Etruscan deities absorbed into Roman mythology and custom. If you took Latin in high school, you’ll recognize that her name references the perpetually turning year. Each March, on the ides, public and private sacrifices were made in her honor, to ensure a smooth transition into the new year, and to bless them over the coming months.
So – other than dead emperors, should you beware the ides of March? Is there some sort of magical significance to the date? Not at all – until Caesar’s assassination, it was just another day on the calendar.
Patti Wigington, Paganism/Wicca Expert
Article published on & owned by About.com
The buzzards (turkey vultures) of Hinckley, Ohio, return like clockwork on this day each year. Their uncanny return to Hinckley Ridge on March 15 has been the subject of folk legends dating back nearly 150 years. It seems that no one paid them much attention until a reporter, in 1957, from the Cleveland Press took an interest. When his article about the buzzards appeared in the paper along with the prediction that they would return on exactly March 15, interest in the birds mounted. By the time March 15 arrived in Hinckley, so did the buzzards-right on time. The news traveled fast, bringing media from Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Indiana. The small township of Hinckley was unprepared for the more than 9,000 bird watchers that ultimately descended upon them. From that day on, the town dedicated March 15 to the Buzzards of Hinckley. The town council immediately made plans to deal with the throngs of people that would return every year along with the buzzards. In time, the fame of the Hinckley buzzards spread. Today, their legendary return rivals stories of the “Swallows of Capistrano.”
An old manuscript account by William Cogswell, one of the first white men to set foot in the county in 1810, made several references to “vultures of the air” at the gallows of the Big Bend in the Rocky River, where an Indian squaw had been hung for Witchcraft. Then again in December of 1818, there is reference to the “Great Hinckley Varmint Hunt.” More than 475 men lined up along Hinckley’s 25-square-mile perimeter and began moving inward to rid the area of predatory animals killing livestock. It is believed that the tons of butchered refuse attracted the vultures. No one really knows for sure what the enticement is, but every year on March 15 the buzzards of Hinckley return.
Tuesday is a Mars day, and just like the god of war, this is the time to tap into magicks to call for strength and courage. This day of the week is for rebels and warriors. If you are facing a challenge of any kind, need a boost to your courage, or want to enhance your passions, Tuesday is the day of the week for you. Some suggestions for Tuesday enchantments would include:
*Wearing the fiery colors associated with this day: scarlet, red, black, and orange. Don some of the more daring and bewitching colors of your wardrobe on Tuesdays and turn a few heads
*Carrying a bloodstone in your pocket or wearing garnet-studded jewelry to reinforce your convictions
*Working with protective and fire-associated plants such as the snapdragon, thistle, and holly to boost your shields and bravery
*Burning spicy-scented energy-enhancing candles to add a little magical aromatherapy to your home
*Cooking up a hearty meal featuring carrots, peppers, and garlic (all Mars foods and spices) to empower yourself for victory and success
Spring is a time of growth and re-energizing in the flow of the seasons. For WOTC, this is also something that is happening as well!
Hello my fellow brothers and sisters,
I am honored here today to show a link of WOTC on another webpage, Eupterra Foundation, that I personally have a hand in addition to being here on WOTC as well. With how much I have seen our gatherings of ancient lore, what works/what’s liked, passing down of traditions and wisdom, and answers to general questions a lot of us have being in and of the craft over the years; it is with heartfelt desire for me to see us grow and expand and our influence reach out to others who can be moved by our way of life.
In time, I hope and encourage WOTC being promoted by other nature-based spirituality and practice sites. Alas for now, I am glad to tell everybody about mine 🙂
Also, as many have awaited, the Essential Oil Series has been completed and is soon to be posting here. I look forward to sharing info and uses with many of you in time upcoming.
In love and light,
Dedicated to the powers of the planet Mars, personified as Ares, Tiwaz, Tiw, and Tyr.
Element : Water
Planet : Mars
Zodiac Sign : Aries / Scorpio
Angel : Samuel
Metal : Iron, Steel
Incense / Perfumes : Dragon’s Blood, Patchouli
Oil : Basil, Coriander, Ginger
Color : Red, Orange
Stones : Bloodstone, Garnet, Carnelian,
Plants/Herbs : Allspice, Blessed Thistle, Cayenne, Daisy, Garlic, Ginger, Pepper, Pine, Red Rose, Thyme, Tobacco, Wormwood
Magick to work: self-assertion, energy, and courage, victory, endurance, passion, masculine goals in general, sex, aggression, protection, controlled power, ambition, arguments, competition, conflict, destruction, lust, male sexuality, sports, strife, struggle, surgery, medical issues, upheaval, war