Origin of Day Names

Days of the Week Names

'bursting sunrise'
KrisTy Flint

Share: 

Rate this Article: 

Average: 3.6 (48 votes)

The days of the week were named by the Romans with the Latin words for the Sun, the Moon, and the five known planets.

These names have survived in European languages, but English names also reflect an Anglo-Saxon influence. See the English day names and their influences in the chart below.

You can also learn more about month names and their origination here.

English Latin French Italian Spanish Saxon
 SUNDAY

dies Solis

(Sol’s day. Sol was an ancient Roman sun god.)

 dimanche

(from the Latin for “Lord’s day”)

 domenica

(from the Latin for “Lord’s day”)

 domingo

(from the Latin for “Lord’s day”)

Sunnandaeg

(Sun’s day)

 MONDAY

dies Lunae

(Luna’s day. Luna was an ancient Roman moon goddess.)

 lundi  lunedì  lunes Monandaeg

(Moon’s day)

 TUESDAY

dies Martis

(Mars’s day. Mars was an ancient Roman god of war.)

 mardi  martedì  martes

Tiwesdaeg

(Tiw’s day. Tiw was an Anglo-Saxon god of war.)

 WEDNESDAY

dies Mercurii

(Mercury’s day. Mercury was a messenger of the ancient Roman gods, and a god of commerce.)

 mercredi  mercoledì  miércoles

Wodnesdaeg

(Woden was the Anglo-Saxon king of the gods.)

 THURSDAY

dies Jovis

(Jupiter’s, or Jove’s, day. Jupiter, or Jove, was the king of the ancient Roman gods, and a god of sky and thunder.)

 jeudi  giovedì  jueves Thursdaeg

(Thor’s day. Thor was a Norse god of thunder, lightning, and storms.)

 FRIDAY

dies Veneris

(Venus’s day. Venus was the ancient Roman goddess of love.)

 vendredi  venerdì  viernes Frigedaeg

(Frigga’s day. Frigg was a Norse goddess of home, marriage, and fertility.)

 SATURDAY dies Saturni

(Saturn’s day)

 samedi

(from the Latin for “Sabbath”)

 sabato

(from the Latin for “Sabbath”)

 sábado

(from the Latin for “Sabbath”)

Saeterndaeg

(Saturn’s day. Saturn was an ancient Roman god of fun and feasting.)

 

What do you want to read next?

Free Beginners Garden Guide

Vegetable Gardening for Beginners!
Your complete guide on how to grow a vegetable garden—from scratch!

 

You will also be subscribed to our Almanac Companion Newsletter