third month of our year, first month of the ancient Roman calendar, c. 1200, from Anglo-French marche, Old French marz, from Latin Martius (mensis) "(month) of Mars," from Mars (genitive Martis). The Latin word also is the source of Spanish marzo, Portuguese março, Italian marzo, German März, Dutch Maart, Danish Marts, etc.
Replaced Old English hreðmonaþ, the first part of which is of uncertain meaning, perhaps from hræd "quick, nimble, ready, active, alert, prompt." Another name for it was Lide, Lyde (c.1300), from Old English hlyda, which is perhaps literally "noisy" and related to hlud "loud" (see loud). This fell from general use 14c. but survived into 19c. in dialect.
For March hare, proverbial type of madness, see mad (adj.). The proverb about coming in like a lion and going out like a lamb is since 1630s. March weather has been figurative of changeableness since mid-15c.
Proto-Indo-European root meaning "to hear."
It forms all or part of: ablaut; Cleon; Clio; Damocles; Hercules; leer; list (v.2) "hear, harken;" listen; loud; Mstislav; Pericles; Slav; slave; Slavic; Slovene; Sophocles; Themistocles; umlaut; Wenceslas; Yugoslav.
It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit srnoti "hears," srosati "hears, obeys," srutah "heard of, celebrated;" Avestan sraothra "ear;" Middle Persian srod "hearing, sound;" Greek klyo "hear, be called," klytos "heard of, celebrated," kleos "report, rumor, fame glory," kleio "make famous;" Latin cluere "to hear oneself called, be spoken of," inclutus "renowned, famous;" Armenian lu "known;" Lithuanian klausau, klausyti "to hear," šlovė "splendor, honor;" Old Church Slavonic slusati "to hear," slava "fame, glory," slovo "word;" Old Irish ro-clui-nethar "hears," clunim "I hear," clu "fame, glory," cluada "ears," Irish cloth "noble, brave;" Welsh clywaf "I hear," clod "praise, fame;" Old English hlud "loud," hlysnan "to listen, hear," hleoðor "tone, tune;" Old High German hlut "sound;" Gothic hiluþ "listening, attention."
late 14c., rore, "the loud, continued cry of a large beast," from roar (v.) and Old English gerar. Of other full, loud, continued, confused sounds by c. 1400; specifically of thunder and cannon by 1540s.