Ides of March

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Many people are familiar with the phrase the ides of March because of the Shakespeare play, Julius Caesar. We will examine what the phrase the ides of March means, where it came from and some examples of its use in sentences.

The ides of March is the date March 15th. Ides is an Ancient Roman term meaning the middle day of a month. In some months the ides is the 13th day of the month, and in other months the ides is the 15th day of the month. The ides of March is famous because according to tradition, Julius Caesar was warned by a soothsayer to “Beware the ides of March.” It was on this day that Caesar was assinated in 44 B.C. The word ides is derived from the Latin word idus. Note that according to the Oxford English Dictionary, the word ides is not capitalized in the phrase the ides of March.


The folks at Bespoke Investment Group looked at how the S&P 500 performed through the Ides of March–the 15th, that is–and compared it to the 10 years that were most similar…and came away with “One extremely ominous year”…1931. (Barron’s Magazine)

The Ides of March or Eidus Martiae in Latin is a day on the Roman calendar that corresponds to March 15. (Leadership Newspaper)

Ignoring the warning, as he passed the seer on his way to the Roman Senate, Caesar joked, “The Ides of March are here,” implying that he was still alive and well. (The News & Observer)

In this part of the world, the Ides of March fall on a perfect month, one that just loves to stab us in the back. (The Saskatoon Star PHoenix)