- James Russell Lowell
During the waning half of the year, as the days grow shorter, the Holly King rules and represents withdrawal and rest. At the Winter Solstice the Oak King "rules" from Midwinter to Midsummer, ie when the length of the day is increasing. The path of the sun is moving toward darkness.
According to the Gregorian calendar, July is the 7th month. Until 44 B.C. this month was called Quintilis, meaning 5th month, but this changed with Julius Caesar gave the month 31 days in 46 B.C. The Roman Senate name it Julius in honor of the murdered Julius Caesar who had been born on the 12th. While July is usually one of the hottest months of the year in the Northern Hemisphere, it is one of the winter months in the Southern Hemisphere. The sun passes from Cancer to Leo on July 23rd, and traditionally during the last two weeks of July and the first two weeks of August, Sirius, the dog star, can be seen in the sky.
For those who were born in the month of July the Ruby is the traditional birthstone. The July birthstone poem reflects some of the properties with which the Ruby is associated - devotion, integrity, courage and happiness.
It brings peace of mind, stimulates sexuality, removes evil and impure thoughts, and banishes sorrows. The word Ruby is derived from the Latin word "ruber""red" which means , reflecting the color of the stone.
The July Birth Flower is the Larkspur, a member of the buttercup family, has the symbolic meaning of ardent attachment and open heart, and unlike any other flower, the larkspur sends the message of appreciation for a friend or lover’s uniqueness. Some sources also give the water lily as July's flower. The water lily is symbolic of pure love.
"The sun is a huntress young,
The sun is a red, red joy,
The sun is an Indian girl,
Of the tribe of the Illinois.
The sun is a smouldering fire,
That creeps through the high gray plain,
And leaves not a bush of cloud
To blossom with flowers of rain.
The sun is a wounded deer,
That treads pale grass in the skies,
Shaking his golden horns,
Flashing his baleful eyes.
The sun is an eagle old,
There in the windless west.
Atop of the spirit-cliffs
He builds him a crimson nest."
- Vachel Lindsay, An Indian Summer Day on the Prairie