Thursday, August 1, 2019

August



So here it is, technically still on time ;) I just underestimated my tiredness yesterday after arriving home from my vacation and the number of chores that needed to be done today. But here it is - enjoy!


August is the eighth month of the year in the Julian and Gregorian calendars, and the fifth of seven months to have a length of 31 days. It was originally named Sextilis in Latin because it was the sixth month in the original ten-month Roman calendar under Romulus in 753 BC, and March was the first month of the year. About 700 BC, it became the eighth month when January and February were added to the year before March by King Numa Pompilius, who also gave it 29 days. Julius Caesar added two days when he created the Julian calendar in 46 BC (708 AUC), giving it its modern length of 31 days. In 8 BC, it was renamed in honour of Augustus. According to a Senatus consultum quoted by Macrobius, he chose this month because it was the time of several of his great triumphs, including the conquest of Egypt.


In the Southern Hemisphere, August is the seasonal equivalent of February in the Northern Hemisphere. In many European countries, August is the holiday month for most workers. Numerous religious holidays occurred during August in ancient Rome.



August birthstones are the peridot, sardonyx, and spinel.
Its birth flower is the gladiolus or poppy, meaning beauty, the strength of character, love, marriage and family.
The Western zodiac signs for the month of August are Leo (until August 22) and Virgo (from August 23 onwards).



Peridot (/ˈpɛrɪdɒt/ or /ˈpɛrɪdoʊ/) (sometimes called chrysolite) is gem-quality olivine and a silicate mineral with the formula of (Mg, Fe)2SiO4. As peridot is a magnesium-rich variety of olivine (forsterite), the formula approaches Mg2SiO4.


Peridot is one of the few gemstones that occur in only one colour: an olive-green. The intensity and tint of the green, however, depends on the percentage of iron in the crystal structure, so the colour of individual peridot gems can vary from yellow to olive, to brownish-green. In rare cases, peridot may have a medium-dark toned, pure green with no secondary yellow hue or brown mask.


Olivine, of which peridot is a type, is a common mineral in mafic and ultramafic rocks, often found in lava and in peridotite xenoliths of the mantle, which lava carries to the surface; however, gem-quality peridot occurs in only a fraction of these settings. Peridots can also be found in meteorites.


Peridots can be differentiated by size and composition. Peridot formed as a result of volcanic activity tends to contain higher concentrations of lithium, nickel and zinc than those found in meteorites.


Olivine is an abundant mineral, but gem-quality peridot is rather rare due to its chemical instability on Earth's surface. Olivine is usually found as small grains and tends to exist in a heavily weathered state, unsuitable for decorative use. Large crystals of forsterite, the variety most often used to cut peridot gems, are rare; as a result, olivine is considered to be precious.



Onyx primarily refers to the parallel banded variety of the silicate mineral chalcedony. Agate and onyx are both varieties of layered chalcedony that differ only in the form of the bands: agate has curved bands and onyx has parallel bands. The colours of its bands range from white to almost every colour. Commonly, specimens of onyx contain bands of black and/or white. Onyx, as a descriptive term, has also been applied to parallel banded varieties of alabaster, marble, obsidian and opal, and misleadingly to materials with contorted banding, such as »Cave Onyx« and »Mexican Onyx«.


Onyx is formed of bands of chalcedony in alternating colours. It is cryptocrystalline, consisting of fine intergrowths of the silica minerals quartz and moganite. Its bands are parallel to one another, as opposed to the more chaotic banding that often occurs in agates. 


Onyx is a gemstone found in various regions of the world including Yemen, Uruguay, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Czech Republic, Germany, India, Indonesia, Madagascar, Latin America, the UK, and various states in the US.



Spinel ( /spɪˈnɛl/) is the magnesium aluminium member of the larger spinel group of minerals. It has the formula MgAl2O4 in the cubic crystal system. Its name comes from Latin »spina« (arrow).


Though spinels are often referred to as rubies, as in the Black Prince Ruby, the true ruby is not a spinel. Balas ruby is an old name for a rose-tinted variety of spinel.



Gladiolus (from Latin, the diminutive of gladius, a sword) is a genus of perennial cormous flowering plants in the iris family (Iridaceae). It is sometimes called the 'sword lily', but is usually called by its generic name (plural gladioli). The genus occurs in Asia, Mediterranean Europe, South Africa, and tropical Africa.


Gladioli grow from rounded, symmetrical corms, (similar to crocuses) that are enveloped in several layers of brownish, fibrous tunics.


Their stems are generally unbranched, producing 1 to 9 narrow, sword-shaped, longitudinal grooved leaves, enclosed in a sheath. The lowest leaf is shortened to a cataphyll. The leaf blades can be plane or cruciform in cross-section.


The flowers of unmodified wild species vary from very small to perhaps 40 mm across, and inflorescences bearing anything from one to several flowers. The spectacular giant flower spikes in commerce are the products of centuries of hybridisation and selection.



Poppy is a flowering plant in the subfamily Papaveroideae of the family Papaveraceae. Poppies are herbaceous plants, often grown for their colourful flowers. One species of poppy, Papaver somniferum, is the source of the narcotic drug opium which contains powerful medicinal alkaloids such as morphine and has been used since ancient times as an analgesic and narcotic medicinal and recreational drug. It also produces edible seeds. Following the trench warfare in the poppy fields of Flanders, Belgium during World War I, poppies have become a symbol of remembrance of soldiers who have died during wartime.


Poppies are herbaceous annual, biennial or short-lived perennial plants. Some species are monocarpic, dying after flowering. Poppies can be over a metre tall with flowers up to 15 centimetres across. Flowers of species (not cultivars) have 4 to 6 petals, many stamens forming a conspicuous whorl in the centre of the flower and an ovary of from 2 to many fused carpels. The petals are showy, may be of almost any colour and some have markings. The petals are crumpled in the bud and as blooming finishes, the petals often lie flat before falling away. In the temperate zones, poppies bloom from spring into early summer. Most species secrete latex when injured. Bees use poppies as a pollen source. The pollen of the oriental poppy, Papaver orientale, is dark blue, that of the field or corn poppy (Papaver rhoeas) is grey to dark green. The opium poppy, Papaver somniferum, grows wild in eastern and southern Asia, and South-Eastern Europe. It is believed that it originated in the Mediterranean region.


The flowers of most poppy species are attractive and are widely cultivated as annual or perennial ornamental plants. This has resulted in a number of commercially important cultivars, such as the Shirley poppy, a cultivar of Papaver rhoeas and semi-double or double (flore plena) forms of the opium poppy Papaver somniferum and oriental poppy (Papaver orientale). Poppies of several other genera are also cultivated in gardens. A few species have other uses, principally as sources of drugs and foods. The opium poppy is widely cultivated and its worldwide production is monitored by international agencies. It is used for the production of dried latex and opium, the principal precursor of narcotic and analgesic opiates such as morphine, heroin and codeine. Poppy seeds are rich in oil, carbohydrates, calcium and protein. Poppy oil is often used as cooking oil, salad dressing oil, or in products such as margarine. Poppy oil can also be added to spices for cakes, or bread. Poppy products are also used in different paints, varnishes, and some cosmetics.



Leo (♌) (Greek: Λέων, Leōn), is the fifth astrological sign of the zodiac. It corresponds to the constellation Leo and comes after Cancer and before Virgo. The traditional Western zodiac associates Leo with the period between July 23 and August 22, and the sign spans the 120th to 150th degree of celestial longitude.


Leo is associated with fire, and its modality is fixed. Under the tropical zodiac, the Sun transits this area on average between July 23 and August 22 each year, and under the sidereal zodiac, the Sun currently transits this area from approximately August 16 to September 15. The constellation Leo is associated with the mythological Nemean lion. Its opposite sign is Aquarius.



Old Slovenian name for the month of August is "veliki srpan" / ʋe:liki səɾpan  / - the month of "big mowing" or "big harvest". "Veliki" means 'great' or 'big' and "srpan" coming from the word "srp" meaning 'sickle'.

At this point (again) I have to say that I have no actual knowledge on writing words phonetically in a correct manner. But because I know (and because it was pointed out at the beginning of the year) it's easier to have at least some clue on how to pronounce unfamiliar words. And it's all thanks to a Wikipedia page on Slovene Phonology.




August birthdays 

August 7th: regikenneth97 and Tara_1994
August 24th: lolitka1444
August 26th: Thrillist
August 27th: kadish

If there's anyone else celebrating their birthday this month, please leave a comment below with your username and birthdate. Birthday rules can be found HERE.



On Stardoll

I believe there are no items inspired by this month's symbols, except for Leo in Other World. Please let me know if I'm wrong. 


As always, you are welcome to share comments, pictures and thoughts below ;)

Have a nice day!
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