Names of The Days of The Week - Days Named After Planets - Germanic Tradition

Germanic Tradition

Further information: Germanic calendar

The Germanic peoples adapted the system introduced by the Romans but glossed their indigenous gods over the Roman deities (with the exception of Saturday) in a process known as Interpretatio germanica. The date of the introduction of this system is not known exactly, but it must have happened later than AD 200 but before the introduction of Christianity during the 6th to 7th centuries, i.e. during the final phase or soon after the collapse of the Western Roman Empire. This period is later than the Common Germanic stage, but still during the phase of undifferentiated West Germanic. The names of the days of the week in Scandinavian languages were not calqued from Latin directly, but taken from the West Germanic names.

  • Sunday: Old English Sunnandæg (pronounced or [sun.nan.dæj), meaning "sun's day". This is a translation of the Latin phrase dies Solis. English, like most of the Germanic languages, preserves the original pagan/sun associations of the day. Many other European languages, including all of the Romance languages, have changed its name to the equivalent of "the Lord's day" (based on Ecclesiastical Latin dies Dominica). In both West Germanic and North Germanic mythology the Sun is personified as a goddess, Sunna/Sól.
  • Monday: Old English Mōnandæg (pronounced or [mon.nan.dæj'), meaning "Moon's day". This is likely based on a translation of the Latin name dies lunae. In North Germanic mythology, the Moon is personified as a god, Máni.
  • Tuesday: Old English Tīwesdæg (pronounced or, meaning "Tiw's day." Tiw (Norse Týr) was a one-handed god associated with single combat and pledges in Norse mythology and also attested prominently in wider Germanic paganism. The name of the day is based on Latin dies Martis, "Day of Mars" (the Roman war god).
  • Wednesday: Old English Wōdnesdæg (pronounced or [woːd.nes.dæj) meaning the day of the Germanic god Wodan (known as Óðinn among the North Germanic peoples), and a prominent god of the Anglo-Saxons (and other Germanic peoples) in England until about the seventh century. It is based on Latin dies Mercurii, "Day of Mercury". The connection between Mercury and Odin is more strained than the other syncretic connections. The usual explanation is that both Wodan and Mercury were considered psychopomps, or leaders of souls, in their respective mythologies; both are also associated with poetic and musical inspiration. The Icelandic Miðviku, German Mittwoch and Finnish keskiviikko all mean 'mid-week'.
  • Thursday: Old English Þūnresdæg (pronounced or ), meaning 'Þunor's day'. Þunor means thunder or its personification, the Norse god known in Modern English as Thor. Similarly German Donnerstag ('thunder's day') and Scandinavian Torsdag ('Thor's day'). Thor's day corresponds to Latin dies Iovis, "day of Jupiter", the chief of the Roman gods, wielder of the thunderbolt.
  • Friday: Old English Frīgedæg (pronounced or ), meaning the day of the Norse goddess Fríge. The Norse name for the planet Venus was Friggjarstjarna, 'Frigg's star'. It is based on the Latin dies Veneris, "Day of Venus". Venus was the Roman goddess of beauty, love and sex.
  • Saturday: the only day of the week to retain its Roman origin in English, named after the Roman god Saturn associated with the Titan Cronus, father of Zeus and many Olympians. Its original Anglo-Saxon rendering was Sæturnesdæg (pronounced or ). In Latin it was dies Saturni, "Day of Saturn". The Scandinavian Lørdag/Lördag deviates significantly as it has no reference to either the Norse or the Roman pantheon; it derives from old Norse laugardagr, literally 'washing-day'.
(see Irregularities)
Frige or Freya
Old English Sunnandæg Mōnandæg Tīwesdæg Wōdnesdæg Þunresdæg Frīgedæg Sæternesdæg
Old High German Sunnûntag Mânetag Zîestag Wôdanstag (Wuotanstag) Donarestag Frîjatag Sunnûnâband or Sambaztag
German Sonntag Montag Dienstag or Ziestag (Swiss German) Mittwoch Donnerstag Freitag Sonnabend or Samstag
Dutch zondag maandag dinsdag woensdag donderdag vrijdag zaterdag
Scots Language Saubath/Sunday Monanday Tysday Wadensday Fuirsday Friday Seturday
Afrikaans Sondag Maandag Dinsdag Woensdag Donderdag Vrydag Saterdag
West Frisian Snein Moandei Tiisdei Woansdei Tongersdei Freed Sneon or Saterdei
Old Norse sunnudagr mánadagr tysdagr óðinsdagr þórsdagr frjádagr laugardagr or sunnunótt
Faroese sunnudagur mánadagur týsdagur mikudagur hósdagur or tórsdagur fríggjadagur leygardagur
Icelandic sunnudagur mánudagur þriðjudagur miðvikudagur fimmtudagur föstudagur laugardagur
Norwegian, Bokmål søndag mandag tirsdag onsdag torsdag fredag lørdag
Norwegian, Nynorsk sundag måndag tysdag onsdag torsdag fredag laurdag
Danish søndag mandag tirsdag onsdag torsdag fredag lørdag
Swedish söndag måndag tisdag onsdag torsdag fredag lördag
Finnish sunnuntai maanantai tiistai keskiviikko torstai perjantai lauantai
Estonian pühapäev esmaspäev teisipäev kolmapäev neljapäev reede laupäev

Read more about this topic:  Names Of The Days Of The Week, Days Named After Planets

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