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Galileo's 1616 drawings of the Moon and its phases. Monday is named after the Moon in many languages.

Monday (pronounced /ˈmʌndeɪ, ˈmʌndi/ ( listen)) is the day of the week between Sunday and Tuesday.



A depiction of Máni, the personified moon, and his sister Sól, the personified sun, from Norse mythology (1895) by Lorenz Frølich.

The English noun Monday derived sometime before 1200 from monedæi, which itself developed from Old English (around 1000) mōnandæg and mōndæg (literally meaning "moon's day"), which is cognate to other Germanic languages, including Old Frisian mōnadeig, Middle Low German and Middle Dutch mānendach (modern Dutch Maandag), Old High German mānetag (modern German Montag), and Old Norse mánadagr (Swedish and Norwegian nynorsk måndag. Danish and Norwegian bokmål mandag). The Germanic term is a Germanic interpretation of Latin lunae dies ("day of the moon").[1]

In many Slavic languages the name of the day eschews pagan tradition and translates as "after Sunday/holiday" (Russian понедельник (poniediélnik), Polish poniedzialek. In Turkish it is called "pazartesi", which means the day after Sunday. In most Indic languages, the word for Monday is dervied from Sanskrit Sōmavāra[2]. Japanese and Korean share the same ancient Chinese words '月曜日' (Hiragana:げつようび, Hangul:월요일) for Monday which means day of the moon.

Position in the week

The international ISO 8601 standard places Monday as the first day of the week, and this is widely used on calendars in Europe and in international business, however according to traditional Christian count, Sunday is the first day of the week. This is the standard format in the United States, Canada and Japan.

But in many other cultures, Monday is held to be the first day of the week. For example, Monday is xingqi yi (星期一) in Chinese, meaning day one of the week. The international standard ISO 8601 defines Monday as the first day of the week. Its name in Georgian and Syriac means "first day". Quakers traditionally refer to Monday as "Second Day" eschewing the pagan origin of the English name "Monday". For similar reasons the official liturgical calendar of the Roman Catholic Church refers to Monday as the second celebration day - Feria II. (The Portuguese and the Greek (Eastern Orthodox Church) name for Monday reflects this, as do all the days' names except Saturday and Sunday: the Portuguese word for Monday is segunda-feira and the Greek word is deutéra (Δευτέρα) ).

Modern culture usually looks at Monday as the beginning of the workweek, as it is typically Monday when adults go back to work and children back to school after the weekend. Thus, Mondays are often seen as a misfortune. In Middle Eastern countries, however, the beginning of the workweek is usually Saturday (Thursday and Friday are observed as the weekend). In Israel, Sunday is the first day of the workweek. Friday is half a work day and Friday night and Saturday are the Sabbath.

Religious observances

In Judaism and Islam Mondays are considered auspicious days for fasting. The Didache warned early Christians not to fast on Mondays to avoid Judaizing, and suggests Wednesdays instead.

In Judaism the Torah is read in public on Monday mornings, one of three days the Torah is read each week (the other two days being Thursday and Saturday). Special penitential prayers are recited on Monday, unless there is a special occasion for happiness which cancels them.

In the Eastern Orthodox Church Mondays are days on which the Angels are commemorated. The Octoechos contains hymns on this theme, arranged in an eight-week cycle, that are chanted on Mondays throughout the year. At the end of Divine Services on Monday, the dismissal begins with the words: "May Christ our True God, through the intercessions of his most-pure Mother, of the honorable, Bodiless Powers (i.e., the angels) of Heaven…". In many Eastern monasteries Mondays are observed as fast days; because Mondays are dedicated to the angels, and monks strive to live an angelic life. In these monasteries the monks abstain from meat, fowl, dairy products, fish, wine and oil (if a feast day occurs on a Monday, fish, wine and oil may be allowed, depending upon the particular feast).

Cultural references

This postcard, sent in 1907 and captioned "Monday Morning in N. Y. City", reflects the tradition of Monday as a day for washing clothes

In the folk rhyme, "Monday's child is fair of face".

In Thailand, the color associated with Monday is yellow, see Thai solar calendar.

A number of songs feature Monday. For example, "Rainy Days and Mondays" (1971) from the Carpenters, "I Don't Like Mondays" (1979) from the Boomtown Rats, and "Manic Monday" (1986) from the Bangles.

There is a band named the Happy Mondays and an American pop punk band Hey Monday.

In the Garfield comics and shows, the titular cat hates Mondays, and is frequently harmed during then.

Monday is the most popular day to commit suicide ( call in sick ( and surf the web ( in the Netherlands.

Monday in different languages

See the main article Week-day names.


Monday aligns with the celestial body, the Moon, and the astrological sign of Cancer.

Named days

See also


  1. ^ Barnhart (1995:485).
  2. ^ Turner, Sir Ralph Lilley (1962). "sōmavāra 13610". A comparative dictionary of the Indo-Aryan languages. London: Oxford University Press. Digital Dictionaries of South Asia, University of Chicago. p. 784. Retrieved 21 Feb 2010. "sōmavāra 13610 sōmavāra masculine 'Monday' inscription [sṓma the plant, vāra 2 meaning day]" 


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Up to date as of January 14, 2010
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Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

Wikipedia has articles on:





Old English mōnandæġ (day of the moon), from mōna (moon) + dæg (day), a calque of the Latin word dies lunae


Proper noun



Monday (plural Mondays)

  1. The first day of the week in Europe and in systems using the ISO 8601 norm and second day of the week in the USA. It follows Sunday and precedes Tuesday.

Derived terms



Monday (not comparable)


not comparable

none (absolute)

  1. on Monday


See also


Simple English

Monday is the second day of the week. In other parts of the world, such as some countries in Europe, Monday is said to be the first day of the week.

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Days of the Week
Sunday | Monday | Tuesday | Wednesday | Thursday | Friday | Saturday


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