February

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February is the second month of the year in the Julian and Gregorian calendars. The month has 28 days in common years or 29 in leap years, with the 29th day being called the leap day. It is the first of five months not to have 31 days (the other four being April, June, September, and November) and the only one to have fewer than 30 days. February is the third and last month of meteorological winter in the Northern Hemisphere. In the Southern Hemisphere, February is the third and last month of meteorological summer (being the seasonal equivalent of what is August in the Northern Hemisphere).

Contents

Pronunciation

"February" is pronounced in several different ways. The beginning of the word is commonly pronounced either as /ˈfɛbju-/ ( Loudspeaker.svg listen ) FEB-yoo- or /ˈfɛbru-/ FEB-roo-; many people drop the first "r", replacing it with /j/ , as if it were spelled "Febuary". This comes about by analogy with "January" ( /ˈæn.ju-/ ( Loudspeaker.svg listen )), as well as by a dissimilation effect whereby having two "r"s close to each other causes one to change. [1] [2] The ending of the word is pronounced /-ɛri/ -err-ee in the US and /-əri/ -ər-ee in the UK.

History

February, from the Tres riches heures du Duc de Berry Les Tres Riches Heures du duc de Berry fevrier.jpg
February, from the Très riches heures du Duc de Berry
February, Leandro Bassano Februar Leandro Bassano.jpg
February, Leandro Bassano

Derived from the Latin word, the Roman month Februarius was named after the Latin term februum, which means "purification", via the purification ritual Februa held on February 15 (full moon) in the old lunar Roman calendar. January and February were the last two months to be added to the Roman calendar, since the Romans originally considered winter a monthless period. They were added by Numa Pompilius about 713 BC. February remained the last month of the calendar year until the time of the decemvirs (c. 450 BC), when it became the second month. At certain times February was truncated to 23 or 24 days, and a 27-day intercalary month, Intercalaris, was occasionally inserted immediately after February to realign the year with the seasons.

February observances in Ancient Rome included Amburbium (precise date unknown), Sementivae (February 2), Februa (February 13–15), Lupercalia (February 13–15), Parentalia (February 13–22), Quirinalia (February 17), Feralia (February 21), Caristia (February 22), Terminalia (February 23), Regifugium (February 24), and Agonium Martiale (February 27). These days do not correspond to the modern Gregorian calendar.

Under the reforms that instituted the Julian calendar, Intercalaris was abolished, leap years occurred regularly every fourth year, and in leap years February gained a 29th day. Thereafter, it remained the second month of the calendar year, meaning the order that months are displayed (January, February, March, ..., December) within a year-at-a-glance calendar. Even during the Middle Ages, when the numbered Anno Domini year began on March 25 or December 25, the second month was February whenever all twelve months were displayed in order. The Gregorian calendar reforms made slight changes to the system for determining which years were leap years, but also contained a 29-day February.

Historical names for February include the Old English terms Solmonath (mud month) and Kale-monath (named for cabbage) as well as Charlemagne's designation Hornung. In Finnish, the month is called helmikuu, meaning "month of the pearl"; when snow melts on tree branches, it forms droplets, and as these freeze again, they are like pearls of ice. In Polish and Ukrainian, respectively, the month is called luty or лютий (lyutiy), meaning the month of ice or hard frost. In Macedonian the month is sechko (сечко), meaning month of cutting (wood). In Czech, it is called únor, meaning month of submerging (of river ice).

In Slovene, February is traditionally called svečan, related to icicles or Candlemas. [3] This name originates from sičan, [4] written as svičan in the New Carniolan Almanac from 1775 and changed to its final form by Franc Metelko in his New Almanac from 1824. The name was also spelled sečan, meaning "the month of cutting down of trees". [3]

In 1848, a proposal was put forward in Kmetijske in rokodelske novice by the Slovene Society of Ljubljana to call this month talnik (related to ice melting), but it did not stick. The idea was proposed by a priest, Blaž Potočnik. [5] Another name of February in Slovene was vesnar, after the mythological character Vesna. [6]

Patterns

Chocolates for St. Valentine's Day Valentines Day Chocolates from 2005.jpg
Chocolates for St. Valentine's Day

Having only 28 days in common years, February is the only month of the year that can pass without a single full moon. Using Coordinated Universal Time as the basis for determining the date and time of a full moon, this last happened in 2018 and will next happen in 2037. [7] [8] The same is true regarding a new moon: again using Coordinated Universal Time as the basis, this last happened in 2014 and will next happen in 2033. [9] [10]

February is also the only month of the calendar that, at intervals alternating between one of six years and two of eleven years, has exactly four full 7-day weeks. In countries that start their week on a Monday, it occurs as part of a common year starting on Friday, in which February 1st is a Monday and the 28th is a Sunday; the most recent occurrence was 2021, and the next one will be 2027. In countries that start their week on a Sunday, it occurs in a common year starting on Thursday; the most recent occurrence was 2015 and the next occurrence will be 2026. The pattern is broken by a skipped leap year, but no leap year has been skipped since 1900 and no others will be skipped until 2100.

Astronomy

February meteor showers include the Alpha Centaurids (appearing in early February), the March Virginids (lasting from February 14 to April 25, peaking around March 20), the Delta Cancrids (appearing December 14 to February 14, peaking on January 17), the Omicron Centaurids (late January through February, peaking in mid-February), Theta Centaurids (January 23 – March 12, only visible in the southern hemisphere), Eta Virginids (February 24 and March 27, peaking around March 18), and Pi Virginids (February 13 and April 8, peaking between March 3 and March 9).

February symbols

The violet 1760 - Salzburg - Stiftskirche St Peter - Viola.JPG
The violet

Observances

This list does not necessarily imply either official status nor general observance.

Month-long observances

Non-Gregorian observance

(All Baha'i, Islamic, and Jewish observances begin at the sundown prior to the date listed, and end at sundown of the date in question unless otherwise noted.)

Movable observances

First Saturday

First Sunday

First Week of February (first Monday, ending on Sunday)

First Monday

First Friday

Second Saturday

Second Sunday

Second Monday

Second Tuesday

Week of February 22

Third Monday

Third Thursday

Third Friday

Last Friday

Last Saturday

Last day of February

Fixed observances

Related Research Articles

April is the fourth month of the year in the Gregorian and Julian calendars. It is the first of four months to have a length of 30 days, and the second of five months to have a length of less than 31 days.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">August</span> Eighth month in the Julian and Gregorian calendars

August is the eighth month of the year in the Julian and Gregorian calendars, and the fifth of seven months to have a length of 31 days. Its zodiac sign is Leo and was originally named Sextilis in Latin because it was the 6th month in the original ten-month Roman calendar under Romulus in 753 BC, with March being the first month of the year. About 700 BC, it became the eighth month when January and February were added to the year before March by King Numa Pompilius, who also gave it 29 days. Julius Caesar added two days when he created the Julian calendar in 46 BC, giving it its modern length of 31 days. In 8 BC, it was renamed in honor of Emperor Augustus. According to a Senatus consultum quoted by Macrobius, he chose this month because it was the time of several of his great triumphs, including the conquest of Egypt. Commonly repeated lore has it that August has 31 days because Augustus wanted his month to match the length of Julius Caesar's July, but this is an invention of the 13th century scholar Johannes de Sacrobosco. Sextilis in fact had 31 days before it was renamed, and it was not chosen for its length.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Calendar</span> System for organizing the days of year

A calendar is a system of organizing days. This is done by giving names to periods of time, typically days, weeks, months and years. A date is the designation of a single, specific day within such a system. A calendar is also a physical record of such a system. A calendar can also mean a list of planned events, such as a court calendar or a partly or fully chronological list of documents, such as a calendar of wills.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">December</span> Twelfth month in the Julian and Gregorian calendars

December is the twelfth and final month of the year in the Julian and Gregorian calendars and is also the last of seven months to have a length of 31 days.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Hebrew calendar</span> Lunisolar calendar used for Jewish religious observances

The Hebrew calendar, also called the Jewish calendar, is a lunisolar calendar used today for Jewish religious observance, and as an official calendar of the state of Israel. It determines the dates for Jewish holidays and the appropriate public reading of Torah portions, yahrzeits, and daily Psalm readings, among many ceremonial uses. In Israel, it is used for religious purposes, provides a time frame for agriculture, and is an official calendar for civil holidays, alongside the Gregorian calendar.

January is the first month of the year in the Julian and Gregorian calendars and is also the first of seven months to have a length of 31 days. The first day of the month is known as New Year's Day. It is, on average, the coldest month of the year within most of the Northern Hemisphere and the warmest month of the year within most of the Southern Hemisphere. In the Southern hemisphere, January is the seasonal equivalent of July in the Northern hemisphere and vice versa.

June is the sixth month of the year in the Julian and Gregorian calendars and is the second of four months to have a length of 30 days, and the third of five months to have a length of less than 31 days. June contains the summer solstice in the Northern Hemisphere, the day with the most daylight hours, and the winter solstice in the Southern Hemisphere, the day with the fewest daylight hours. June in the Northern Hemisphere is the seasonal equivalent to December in the Southern Hemisphere and vice versa. In the Northern Hemisphere, the beginning of the traditional astronomical summer is 21 June. In the Southern Hemisphere, meteorological winter begins on 1 June.

July is the seventh month of the year in the Julian and Gregorian calendars and is the fourth of seven months to have a length of 31 days. It was named by the Roman Senate in honour of Roman general Julius Caesar in 44 B.C., it being the month of his birth. Before then it was called Quintilis, being the fifth month of the calendar that started with March.

A leap year is a calendar year that contains an additional day added to keep the calendar year synchronized with the astronomical year or seasonal year. Because astronomical events and seasons do not repeat in a whole number of days, calendars that have a constant number of days in each year will unavoidably drift over time with respect to the event that the year is supposed to track, such as seasons. By inserting an additional day or month into some years, the drift between a civilization's dating system and the physical properties of the Solar System can be corrected. A year that is not a leap year is a common year.

March is the third month of the year in both the Julian and Gregorian calendars. It is the second of seven months to have a length of 31 days. In the Northern Hemisphere, the meteorological beginning of spring occurs on the first day of March. The March equinox on the 20 or 21 marks the astronomical beginning of spring in the Northern Hemisphere and the beginning of autumn in the Southern Hemisphere, where September is the seasonal equivalent of the Northern Hemisphere's March.

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November is the eleventh and penultimate month of the year in the Julian and Gregorian Calendars, the fourth and last of four months to have a length of 30 days and the fifth and last of five months to have a length of fewer than 31 days. November was the ninth month of the calendar of Romulus c. 750 BC. November retained its name when January and February were added to the Roman calendar. November is a month of late spring in the Southern Hemisphere and late autumn in the Northern Hemisphere. Therefore, November in the Southern Hemisphere is the seasonal equivalent of May in the Northern Hemisphere and vice versa. In Ancient Rome, Ludi Plebeii was held from November 4–17, Epulum Jovis was held on November 13 and Brumalia celebrations began on November 24. These dates do not correspond to the modern Gregorian calendar.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">October</span> Tenth month in the Julian and Gregorian calendars

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<span class="mw-page-title-main">September</span> Ninth month in the Julian and Gregorian calendars

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Lists of holidays by various categorizations.

Slovene months have standard modern names derived from Latin names, as in most European languages. There are also archaic Slovene month names, mostly of Slavic origin, which exist in both a standardized set as well as many variations.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Hruševo</span> Place in Upper Carniola, Slovenia

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<span class="mw-page-title-main">Setnik</span> Place in Upper Carniola, Slovenia

Setnik is a dispersed settlement east of Polhov Gradec in the Municipality of Dobrova–Polhov Gradec in the Upper Carniola region of Slovenia. It includes the hamlets of Zalog, Butajnova, Veliki Vrh, and Mali Vrh. Setnik is known as Setjək in the local dialect.

References

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  2. Wells, John C. (2008). Longman Pronunciation Dictionary (3rd ed.). Longman. ISBN   978-1-4058-8118-0.
  3. 1 2 "Koledar prireditev v letu 2007 in druge informacije občine Dobrova–Polhov Gradec" [The Calendar of Events and Other Information of the Municipality of Dobrova–Polhov Gradec](PDF) (in Slovenian). Municipality of Dobrova-Polhov Gradec. 2006. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-11-02.{{cite journal}}: Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  4. Vasmer, Max, ed. (1972). "Zeitschrift für slavische Philologie". 36–37. Markert&Petters: 115. Archived from the original on 2021-02-06. Retrieved 2020-10-02.{{cite journal}}: Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
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  11. "Birth Month Flowers". Babiesonline.com. Archived from the original on 2016-08-05. Retrieved 2016-09-17.
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  13. "February Birthstone | Amethyst". Americangemsociety.org. Archived from the original on 2013-06-30. Retrieved 2016-09-17.
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  15. "LGBT+ History Month". /lgbtplushistorymonth.co.uk. Schools Out United Kingdom. Archived from the original on 22 February 2021. Retrieved 23 February 2021.
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Further reading