Dog days of summer is a term used to refer to the hot and sultry days of the summer. This particular phrase comes from the very old beliefs of people in Greece about a particular star. The dog days of summer are considered the period which has the hottest season on earth.
The season coincides with when dogs would be seen floating in pools, struggling to find some shade as well as a lot of panting from them even when they haven’t been engaged in any running activity around.
The Star Sirius Summer
These were the hottest and worst days in western antiquity. During this period, all liquids were considered poisonous regardless of if one was taking a bath, a swim or drinking water to quench thirst. This period was also characterized by sores or wounds not healing properly.
People usually described the act of being tired as being dog-tired or being sick as a dog. When people were working they could be told to’ dog it’ while when they were on their hours of leisure, it was described as ‘going to the dogs’.
The original Greeks and Romans identified that the star of Sirius which was also referred to as the Dog Star, rose together with the sun a little time after the solstice of summer.
This is usually the period of the summer when it is very hot and some publications noted that the dog days occurred between the 3rd of July and the 11th of August. read this article
Dog days in different cultures
Dog days of the summer didn’t occur in every culture. Each place had a different type of dog day to deal with. The rise of the Sirius star in the southern hemisphere meant that it was going to be cold due to the winter period arriving. It is important to note dog days had different names in the various cultures such as the Babylonians who called it Kak-sidi meaning arrow.
Dog days are mainly associated with a lot of heat but the Sirius star has different meanings depending on where one is on the earth.