[укр] Неділя — перший день у тижні у деяких народів, але не в українців. Самі назви днів тижня показують, що понеділок — перший:
- четвер 'Thursday' — від слова «четвертий» '4th',
- пʼятниця 'Friday' — від слова «пʼятий» '5th'.
(У російській мові, яка споріднена з українською, можна помітити, що «вівторок» першопочатково значив 'другий': російське «второй» = укр. «другий» 'second', рос. «вторник» = укр. «вівторок» 'Tuesday'.)
Якщо четвер четвертий, пʼятниця пʼята, а вівторок другий, то виходить, що понеділок — перший, а неділя — останній день тижня.
У деяких народів це не так. Наприклад, у португальців:
- segunda-feira 'понеділок' — від слова segunda 'друга',
- terça-feira 'вівторок' — від слова terça, старого варіанту terceira 'третя',
- quarta-feira 'середа' — від слова quarta 'четверта',
- quinta-feira 'четвер' — від слова quinta 'пʼята',
- sexta-feira 'пʼятниця' — від слова sexta 'шоста'.
Через це, україномовним може бути важко навчитися використовувати португальські дні тижня, а португаломовним — українські. :)
Якщо в Вашій рідній мові логіка назв днів тижня не збігається з українською, вам доведеться трошки перевчитися. Але це не страшно, це цілком можливо. Я вчу португальську і вже навчився використовувати португальські назви. :)
[анг] Sunday is the first day of the week for some nations, but not for Ukrainians. The names of the days of the week themselves show that Monday is the first day of the week:
- четвер 'Thursday' comes from the word «четвертий» '4th',
- пʼятниця 'Friday' comes from the word «пʼятий» '5th'.
(In Russian, which is related to Ukrainian, you can see that «вівторок» 'Tuesday' originally meant 'second': Russian «второй» = Ukrainian «другий» 'second', Rus. «вторник» = Ukr. «вівторок» 'Tuesday'.)
If Thursday is the 4th day, Friday is the 5th day, and Tuesday is the 2nd day, then Monday is the first day, and Sunday is the last day of the week.
Some nations have it differently. For example, the Portuguese:
- segunda-feira 'Monday' comes from segunda 'second',
- terça-feira 'Tuesday' comes from terça, and old variant of terceira 'third',
- quarta-feira 'Wednesday' comes from quarta 'forth',
- quinta-feira 'Thursday' comes from quinta 'fifth',
- sexta-feira 'Friday' comes from sexta 'sixth'.
Because of this, it might be difficult for Ukrainian speakers to master Portuguese days of the week, and vice versa. :)
If your native language uses a different logics for days of the weeks, you'll need to re-learn some things. But it's not too difficult, it's absolutely possible. I've been learning Portuguese and I already can use Portuguese days of the week well. :)
Thank you for this explanation. Please notice that being the fourth day can mean the fourth day after Sunday, but the fifth day of the week. Correct me if I am wrong, but Ukrainian середа comes from the middle (of the week). It is the fourth day and not the third one that is in the middle of a seven-day week. Therefore I argue that Sunday is the first day of the week also in Ukrainian language.
It is quite similar in my mother tongue, which is Polish:
- niedziela (Sunday) comes from nie działać (not to act/work),
- poniedziałek (Monday) comes from po niedzieli (after Sunday),
- wtorek (Tuesday) comes from old Polish wtóry (the second),
- środa (Wednesday) comes from środek (the middle),
- czwartek (Thursday) comes from czwarty (the fourth),
- piątek (Friday) comes from piąty (the fifth),
- sobota (Saturday) comes from Hebrew szabbāth through Latin sabbatum, sabbata (the seventh and the last, festive day of the week).
However, not everyone in Poland follows this logic. One of our radio stations broadcasts on Sunday a program titled Siódmy dzień tygodnia ("The seventh day of the week").
For me, середа is the middle of the working week, excluding days off. I don't know if this is the original meaning (probably not?), but it kinda makes sense to me.
Anyway, I think it's much more popular to start counting from Monday in Ukrainian. If you google for «Календар на 2017 рік», you'll see that the overwhelming majority of the results will have Sunday as the last day of the week. If you ask people to count days of the week, most likely they will start counting from понеділок and will end on the неділя. If you switch your computer interface to Ukrainian, it will start showing Sunday as the last day of the week.
I can't vouch that absolutely no one starts counting from Sunday (maybe Canadian Ukrainians?), but the overwhelming majority doesn't. For almost every Ukrainian out there, Sunday would be the last day of the week, not the first one.
I'm not sure, but I think originally Sunday belonged to both the previous and to the past weeks.
I think people in the past counted things differently. For example, Greeks called Olympics a five-year period:
That the Olympics were held every four years is well known, but some evidence for that assertion is not out of place. Ancient writers all refer to the Olympics as a 5-year period (in Greek, pentaeterikoi, Latin quinquennales). This might seem strange, but Greeks and Romans most commonly counted inclusively; that is to say:
which we would call a four-year interval. (The Ancient Greek Calendar)
So, basically, a period between Olympics was 5 years, but the first year overlapped with the last year of the previous cycle.
Maybe something like this was used for the week originally? Like, the week is a 8-day period:
If the weeks were allowed to overlap, then Sunday could have been both the first and the last day of the week. And maybe as people got better at maths, we had to make the decision whether Sunday is the first or the last day of the week, and different people made different decisions.
This is just a conjecture — I don't know how it really happened!