Today is the day, my friends. Friday is here, and to celebrate impending freedom, here are some fun Friday facts.
6 Facts about Friday
The Definition Has Changed
Friday is no longer merely a day of the week. It’s a symbol of approaching freedom. In fact, Friday has become such a symbolic word in the U.S. that even if your work week doesn’t end on Friday, the last day is still Friday, right? It’s “your Friday.”
Which is the new definition of Friday: the final day of a work week.
The Original Word Comes from Goddesses
If you look up the etymology of “Friday,” you’ll find “frigedæg” or “Frigga’s day.” Frigga was a Germanic goddess of love. So why was the day named after a Germanic goddess of love?
Because it was previously named after the Roman goddess of love, and when the Latin was translated to German, they switched to the equivalent goddess in their belief system.
I wonder what made people consider Friday romantic or related to love in the first place. Definitely not the next fact!
Friday Is Not Always the End of the Work Week
In some cultures, it’s the first day of the week end. In others, it’s the last day of the week end. Here are some work weeks that may blow your mind.
- Afghanistan: Saturday – Wednesday
- Algeria: Sunday – Thursday
- Bolivia: Monday – Saturday
- Djibouti: Saturday – Thursday
And there are plenty of other countries that follow these work weeks, too. If you look through the list, you may notice that the days of the weekend often correspond with religious sabbaths, which makes a lot of sense.
I also found it interesting that there weren’t any examples of Wednesday – Sunday weeks or anything like that. I guess no religion has claimed Tuesday for its holy day yet.
It’s funny how stuff like this can surprise you. I generally expect there to be differences between cultures, but I never thought of the work week as being part of that. Now, I find myself thinking how it would affect international business, traveling in those countries, or moving to a country with a different work week. It would definitely take some mental flexibility!
Friday Was a Common Day for Fasting
Fasting has lost a lot of traction in recent decades, but it used to be widely popular. I’m still not sure if that fact reflects the power of organized religion or the reality that many people didn’t have much to eat in the first place.
In some cultures where religion was particularly strong or strict, the name for the day is actually defined by this religious fasting (sometimes because days named for pagan gods were forbidden).
Which makes TGIF a bit ironic, don’t you think?
Fridays Were Unlucky
Can you believe it? I’ve heard of “Friday the 13th” superstitions, but I never realized that day was considered unlucky because it was the overlap of 2 unlucky things.
Apparently, it was never the strongest superstition out there. It appears to have been most common in maritime communities, and the biggest warning associated with it was “Never start a voyage on a Friday.”
Why? Well, it’s hard to say.
Some sources claim that Friday is unlucky because that was the day of the crucifixion of Jesus. Some say it was the day Even and Adam ate the apple. How anyone would know that, I’m not sure.
But why expect logic from a superstition?
In any case, I’d have to say that belief is fairly routed in the U.S. Most of us definitely feel that Fridays are good days, not bad!
I already mentioned TGIF (“Thank God It’s Friday”), which demonstrates just how little a hold the superstition above has in the U.S.
There is another Friday acronym, however, that I found while writing this. And it amuses me greatly. It’s “POETS Day.” It’s supposedly common in the U.K. and Australia.
What does it mean? “Piss Off Early; Tomorrow’s Saturday.” I love it. 🥰
It goes well with some Mexican slang, too – “Viernes Chilango.” Which basically means to take off early on Friday like people from a specific area / city of Mexico (see: Chilango).
Happy POETS Day!
Whatever you call it, happy Friday! And if it’s not the end of your work week, happy end-of-the-week day to you when it comes!