By Jenna Renaud
Word of the Week: March Madness
This week instead of strictly defining a word, we’re talking about the origin of the phrase March Madness in honor of the tournament kicking off!
March Madness originated from the phrase “mad as March here”; however, it did not come from the NCAA tournament, but rather Henry Porter, an Illinois high school athletics administrator in 1939. In the 1940s, March Madness was used for Illinois state basketball tournaments, before spreading elsewhere in the Midwest region.
40 years later in the 1980s, March Madness came to be associated with the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament, an association many credit to commentator Brent Musburger.
This Week at Falvey
NOW–Wednesday, Jun. 15th
“That Fairyland of Ice”: Polar Exploration in Mind and Memory Exhibit | Falvey First Floor & Virtual | Free & Open to the Public
Monday, March 14th
Mindfulness Mondays | 1–1:30 p.m. | Virtual | https://villanova.zoom.us/j/98337578849
Wednesday, March 16th
2022 Falvey Forum Workshop Series: Mastering the Labyrinth: Newspaper–Magazine Archives | 12–1 p.m. | Virtual | https://villanova.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJMsfuqsrTsvG9BvwhHkwcD9LIxFsFF0yACe
Friday, March 18th
Villanova Gaming Society Meeting | 2:30–4:30 p.m. | Speakers’ Corner | Free & Open to the Public
This Week in History
February 15th, 44 B.C. – Assassination of Julius Caesar
“Beware of the ides of March”
2,066 years ago on March 15th, Julius Caesar, dictator of Rome, is stabbed to death in the Roman Senate house by 60 conspirators led by Marcus Junius Brutus and Gaius Cassius Longinus. This day then infamously came to be known as the “Ides of March.”
Despite now being associated with a more ominous connotation, the ides of March has a tamer origin. Ides simply referred to the first new moon of a given month, with each month having its own ides, typically falling between the 13th and the 15th. The ides of March was the 74th day in the Roman calendar and traditionally associated with religious celebrations and at one point, the new year.
Jenna Renaud is a Graduate Assistant in Falvey Memorial Library and a Graduate Student in the Communication Department.