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Magickal Correspondences: January


Word Origin: the term “January” is coined after the Roman God Janus. Historical names for the month of January include the original Roman name “Ianuarius”, the Saxon name “Wulf-Monath” (“Wolf Month”), Charlamagne’s name “Wintarmanoth” (“Winter/Cold Month”), the ancient Japanese name “Mutsuki”, and the Finnish name “Tammikuu” (“Month of the Oak”).

Mythology: The month of January was named after the Roman God Janus. Janus was a two-faced God of doorways, beginnings and endings, and transitions. This is why January was the first month of the year! He is depicted as a two-faced God because one face is looking to the past, and one face is looking to the future, and occasionally he is depicted as having four faces. It is said that the Roman God Saturn came to the city ruled by Janus on a ship after being shut out of Olympus by Jupiter. When he was received warmly by the king, Saturn bestowed upon Janus the ability to see into the future and into the past. Unlike many Roman Gods and Goddesses, Janus does not have a Greek equivalent, though his worship dates back to before the Roman Empire was formed. One myth says that Janus was a king who brought mankind from barbarity to civility. These two sides of the coin are another reason Janus has two faces. The Romans highly coveted Janus because he was the God of doorways, and through him, all the other deities could be reached. Before any rite,Janus was given gifts and libations. There were also many arches built in Rome in honor of Janus, as they were symbolic of him and thought to bring luck and prosperity. There are some who believe that January is named after Juno instead of Janus. Juno is also a Roman two-faced Goddess, who looks backwards and forwards. This is why January is a good month to look back on the year and learn from mistakes, and look forward to what is to come in the new year.

Traditions and Folklore: As Americans, we associate the month of January with New Year’s, and is the first month of the year in the Gregorian Calendar. This celebration is counted down the night before with festivities and fireworks. In Scotland they celebrate the festival of Hogmanay on this day. In ancient times, there was a tradition called “The Door Custom” or “First Footing”, and was supposed to bring luck into the New Year. At midnight on January 1st, people would wait inside their doors for a person bearing coal, bread, money, and greenery (all symbols of good luck). The visitor would then take a bit of ash from the fireplace to signify the departure of the old year. January 1st was also a very superstitious day in Medieval times regarding prosperity for the new year. A flat cake was placed on the heads of horned cows in every farm. The farmers would then sing and dance next to the cow until the cake was thrown off onto the ground. If the cake fell behind the cow it signified bad luck and if it fell in front of the cow it signified good luck. January 2nd in Saxon belief was the unluckiest day of the year, and any person born on that day would die a horrible death. On January 20th there is a tradition called “St. Agnes’ Eve” where all the unmarried girls would perform rituals to find husbands.

Moon: Wolf Moon, Cold Moon, Ice Moon, Winter Moon
Zodiac: Capricorn, Aquarius
Element: Earth, Air
Gender: Masculine
Sabbat: N/A
Deities: Janus, Freyja, Inanna, Sarasvati, Hera, Ch’ang-O, Sinn, Pax, Venus
Animals: fox, coyotes, pheasant, blue jay
Nature Spirits: gnomes, brownies
Trees: birch
Colors: white, grey, blue-violet, indigo, purple, black

Flowers/Herbs: galanthus, cottage pink dianthus, carnation, marjoram, holy thistle, nuts, cones, snowdrop, crocus, patchouli, peppermint, lavender, pine

Crystals: garnet, onyx, jet, chrysoprase, moonstone, rose quartz, ruby, red tourmaline, emerald, sapphire

Incense: musk, mimosa

Characteristics, Influences, and Energies:
 spellwork dealing with beginnings, protection, reversal spells, below the surface issues, conserving energy, working on personal problems, healing, strength


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  • Thank for the useful information 

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