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Wild as a March Hare

March Flower: Daffodil

daffodils

MARCH FACTS & FICTIONS   Where citations take a holiday.

Have you ever heard the expression “wild as a March hare”? Do you know what it means? A hare is a jack rabbit. Some hares can run as fast as 45 mph. In Africa, hares are mythologically considered tricksters, whence came the Brer Rabbit stories in North America. In Europe, the hare was traditionally considered a fertility symbol, and it’s mating season is in the spring. From this, Easter bunny tradition evolved in North America.  As for the”wild as …” expression, some say that buck hares are very frolicsome in March, their breeding season. In earlier times, the word was not “march” but “marsh,” indicating that hares had more freedom to move about on the marsh, unrestricted by fencing. Chaucer used the phrase “mad as a hare.” And Lewis Carroll borrowed from that tradition to create the March Hare in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.

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