February is mostly recognized for Valentine’s Day, flowers, and, depending on where you are, being incredibly cold!
Oddly enough, even though it’s just another month, there’s a lot of history behind this month of romance and love!
Read on to find out some historical events which occurred in February, as well as how it came to be the shortest month of the year.
February fluctuates between having 28 and 29 days per year. The 29th day only occurs every 4 years during leap years.
The length of February was finalized when Julius Caesar remade the Roman calendar and assigned the month 28 days and 29 days. In 713 B.C., February was officially added to the Roman calendar.
If you were born in February, your birthstone is an amethyst, and your flower is a primrose.
The western zodiac signs in February are Aquarius which is until February 19th, and Pisces, which is until February 20th.
Over time, the length of February kept changing. At one point, it had as little as 23 days.
In the Northern Hemisphere, February is the third month of winter. Meanwhile, in the Southern Hemisphere, February is the last month of summer. Between the North and South Hemispheres, February is the equivalent of August.
The name of February comes from the Latin word “februum,” which means purification.
February was named after a purification ritual which was like an early Roman spring cleaning festival.
In Welsh, February is sometimes known as “y mis bach,” which means “little month.”
February and January were the last months added to the Roman numeral calendar.
The Saxons called February “Sol-monath” which means “cake month,” because they would offer cakes to the gods during February.
Of all the words you can misspell, February is one of the most misspelled words in the English language. Even the White House has misprinted the word “February” before in a press release!
February is the only month where it’s possible to go the entire time without having a full moon.
February has been Black History Month for over 40 years.
The odds of being born on February 29th are about 1 in 1,461. Those born on a leap day can be called a “leaper” or “leapling.”
February, March, and November always start on the same day of the week unless it is a leap year.
It was in February 1964 when The Beatles made their first American television appearance on the “Ed Sullivan Show.” Over 73 million Americans watched!
There are many U.S. states that entered the Union during the month of February. These include Massachusetts, Oregon, Arizona, and Mississippi, which were readmitted.
Sadly, on February 1, 2003, the Space Shuttle “Columbia” broke apart in flight, which killed all seven crew members. The accident was believed to be a result of damage that occurred during lift-off. The tragedy occurred only 16 minutes before the shuttle was scheduled to land.
On February 2, 1848, U.S. and Mexico signed the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, which ended their war. The U.S. paid Mexico $15 million in exchange for California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Wyoming, and Texas.
So now you know, February isn’t all about Valentine’s Day.
This month is also about purification. It’s a month to prepare for spring: bringing the promise of longer days in the Northern hemisphere.
February is the only month of the year to have only 28 days (with the exception of leap years, of course).
It’s also the only month that can go without having a full moon.
Above are just a few reasons to really celebrate the whole month of February.