Depending on where you look St Hilary's Day is celebrated on the 13th or the 14th of January and many old weather sayings state that its the coldest day of the year. This idea could have begun because the Great Frost of 1205 started on this day and lasted until the 20th of March. It was on the 13th and 14th January that the River Thames froze over in both 1716 and 1814 - the year when the frost fairs were held on the ice. Although in 1814 the frost didn't last so long.
But it certainly won't be that cold in Suffolk this year, where the forecast is for around 9℃ which is about 48℉, so far in January we've hardly had any frosts at all (although plenty of winter still to come).
St Hilary was persuaded to become Bishop of Poitiers by the Pope around the year 350, despite only becoming a Christian late in his life and not really wanting the honour. Later after refusing to attend a synod he was sent into exile by the Emperor Constantius. While in exile he became the first Latin hymn writer of the Christian Church although most of his hymns have been lost
|image borrowed from a website called https://www.prayersandpetitions.org/feast-of-saint-hilary-of-poitiers-13th-january/|
Most of the Hilarys I know about are female (Hillary Clinton, Hilary Mantel) although there is the MP Hilary Benn, son of Tony. The name means "laughter" - so one hopes those who get given it are cheerful characters. Re weather - its forecast to be very cold this weekend in Norfolk. There may be snow...ReplyDelete
A Man called Hilary Hammond was County Librarian for Suffolk in the 80s and reorganised all the libraries here and then he went off to Norfolk to do the same thing there!Delete
Thanks for this - I've never heard of St. Hilary until now. I guess it is where we get hilarity and hilarious from.ReplyDelete
Not sure about the origin of the word - I shall look it upDelete
I don't think the Greeks would agree with Joy. They came first.Delete
< grin > Fair enough - and thanks. xxDelete
I don't think I've heard of St Hilary's Day before. The name is fairly unusual though I went to school with a Hilary, and one of her nicknames was Hilarious of course.ReplyDelete
Can do without any Great Frosts thank you very much - that week or so we had before Christmas was quite enough for us! Now we have flooding currently . . . It must have been bloomin' cold standing on ice selling all your wares.
Forecast here is for colder next week down to minus figures at night. I shall hibernate!Delete
Well, it's not wrong about it being the coldest day of the year. Might not be the coldest, but it's pretty close! My living room hit a record low this morning since records began. Records began in my living room in November last year. LOL.ReplyDelete
Still mildish over here, looking like rain againDelete
Likely we will never see another frost fair on the Thames. Part of the reason the Thames was able to freeze was that one of the old bridges had so many narrow arches that it severely restricted the flow of the river. 13/14 January certainly is not cold this year.ReplyDelete
Yes it's very unlikely to ever happen againDelete
I thought St Hilary was going to be a woman!! My Mum's next door neighbour is called Hilary. But yes thinking about it there are quite a few male Hilary's around aren't there. Dr Hilary Jones on television springs to mind.ReplyDelete
I thought a woman too until I looked in the Saints book!Delete
We started off with snow and now we are raining and going to the 50'sReplyDelete
No winter here yet
We often get more snow in February - waiting to see what it will bringDelete
Interesting, a saint I'd never heard of. Hilary was a popular girl's name when I was growing up. I find it hard to say, tends to come out as hiraly!ReplyDelete
The freezing of the Thames was spectacular, especially when the people turned severe cold into a party.
It seems so strange to think of the Thames being solid enough to have a fair on itDelete
Even though I live across the pond I found this info interesting. I feel very "English", it must be all those British novels I read and my subscription to Acorn and Britbox, lol. My ancestry is descended from Ireland but I would like nothing better than to live in one of the English villages in one of my murder mysteries. Have a great day.💖ReplyDelete
Thank goodness there really aren't as many murders in English villages as they have on TV like Midsummer Murders!Delete
I've never come across a male Hilary. My uncle loved Latin and insisted on attending a Catholic church that sung Latin hymns. The entire sermon was in Latin as well. On occasion, I attended this church. The church is long gone. The mighty Thames freezing is quite something; I've never heard of this event. It's warm in Massachusetts today. Yesterday's dusting of snow melted quickly. Cold with light snow one day and the next day warm has been typical this winter.ReplyDelete
Latin was used for such a long time in churches to keep the bible away from the commoners!Delete
It's going to turn colder here next week - but probably no snow in this bit of England
Interesting.... I have never heard of St. Hilary and I am Catholic....ReplyDelete
I have read several books set during the Frost Fair of 1814 - I think it really captured the imagination of regency authors. Cath at Read-Warbler recommended the Museum of the London Docklands to me last June, which I greatly enjoyed, but I just missed a presentation on the Frost Fairs (maybe both). A great pity.ReplyDelete
It is unusual for men to be named Hilary in the US but there was one in my class at university (kind of a wimpy fellow, I must admit).
I had never heard of a Frost Fair before. Thank you for a pleasant google explore!ReplyDelete