As Groucho Marx once said, ‘My favourite poem is the one that starts “Thirty Days Hath September”, because it actually means something.’ The meaning of ‘Thirty Days Hath September’ is self-evident and straightforward. But what are the origins of this famous rhyme? ‘Thirty Days Hath September’ runs, of course:
Thirty days hath September,
April, June and November;
All the rest have thirty-one,
Excepting February alone.
Which only has but twenty-eight days clear
And twenty-nine in each leap year.
One early reference to ‘Thirty Days Hath September’, from William Harrison in 1577, actually begins, er … ‘Thirty days hath November’:
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