St. Swithin’s Day (July 15), if it does rain
Full forty days, it will remain.
St. Swithin’s Day, if it be fair
For forty days, t’will rain no more.
Ever hear this weather lore? Saint Swithin lived in the ninth century and died as the Bishop of Winchester in 862. He was buried, according to his wishes, outside the walls of the church, “where the faithful could trod over him and the rain could fall and comfort him.”
Over a century later, in 971, after an expansion of the cathedral, his body was removed and placed within the church, contrary to his wishes. The story goes that on this day heavy rain stopped the priests in their work. They could not resume until the next day, but yet the rain continued. The rain kept falling for 40 days. Thus the saying.