I guess many of us have special calendars or diaries with people’s birthdays on them – I do, but I still manage to forget to send cards in time or on the right day! However, for those of us on Facebook, we are reminded there too, so at least we can ‘post’ a greeting there. I was thinking about this because today is the birthday of a cousin and two other friends, plus a couple of Facebook ‘friends’. It got me wondering if the 27th July is a popular date for birthdays in general?
I did a little more googling and found a chart which showed that although July did have more births than other months, it didn’t have as many as September – September is the busiest month for mums having their babies. Looking at statistics from the last few decades, the UK Office for National Statistics reports that September 26th is the most popular birth date:
These 36 years of data cover almost 29 million births. The daily average for the entire period was 1816 births. The day with the lowest number of recorded births was Boxing Day, 26 December 1979, when 1123 babies were born. The single most popular birthday was 27 September 2012, which saw 2383 births.
Obviously, February 29th doesn’t have as many birthdays over a set period of years, because there are less of them – however if you look at the number of births on that day, it’s roughly similar to the days before and after it in February and March.
These days it is possible to plan when you give birth – it’s possible by medical means to give birth to a child before or after its ‘due date’ or to have it on a particular day:
It is reasonable to assume that low numbers on and around non-moving public holidays – such as those over the Christmas and New Year period – are largely caused by the patterns that health services management impose on dates of birth: for instance, planned caesarean sections are generally not scheduled on weekends or public holidays, when fewer staff are available than on ordinary weekdays.
Bearing that in mind, the day of the week a child is born can also affect its birth date, and maybe some parents think of the rhyme:
Monday’s child is fair of face,
Tuesday’s child is full of grace,
Wednesday’s child is full of woe,
Thursday’s child has far to go,
Friday’s child is loving and giving,
Saturday’s child works hard for a living,
But the child who is born on the Sabbath day
Is bonnie and blithe and good and gay.
My sister and I were born on a Friday, as were my two children! In some cultures special numbers are considered lucky, so no doubt some babies are induced to arrive on that day. Friday, it turns out is the day when most children are born, throughout the year, Friday, followed very closely by Thursday, Wednesday, Tuesday, Mondays and then the weekends and holidays such as Christmas Day.
So happy birthday to my cousin and friends, and happy birthday to you if today is your birthday!!
Here is the article I mentioned: