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Fun Facts About February

Here are some interesting facts about the shortest month of the year!

Hi everyone,

I hope you have been enjoying the shortest month of the year so far! Here are some fun facts about the month of February:

What’s in a name?

February is named for the Latin word Februum which means purification. This is because the ancient Romans used to perform an early spring cleaning, or purification, festival called ‘Februarius’ which took place on February 15, before the beginning of their most important season; Spring. In Old English however, February was at some point called Solmonath Mud Month) or Kalemonath (Kale/Cabbage Month). I don’t know about you, but I’m a little disappointed that Cabbage Month didn’t stick!

How do you say it?

Due to the pronunciation of the word, February is one of the most commonly misspelt words in the English language! Many people pronounce the ‘ru’ of February as ‘ew’, as if it were actually spelt ‘F-E-B-U-A-R-Y. We can probably blame Jan-UARY for this, as most people pronounce the ends of both words in the same manner. Understandably, because pronouncing it with the extra ‘r’ is a little complicated! FEB-ROO-RARY. Go on, try it!

Symbols

The birthstone for the month of February is amethyst. It should symbolize piety, wisdom and sincerity. BUT the ancient Greeks had a far more interesting theory. They believed that wearing amethyst protected you from drunkenness. It’s quite easy to imagine the ancient Greeks all wearing amethyst while meeting each other for a drink!

Lunar Cycle

February is the only month of the year that can pass without a full moon. The last time this happened was in 1999, and it will happen again next year. The reason for this is because the amount of time between one full moon and another is 29.5 days. Astronomers call this length of time a ‘lunar month’. Since February only has 28 days, which is less than a lunar month, some years it can miss out on a full moon!

Happy FEB-ROO-RARY everyone!

Hi everyone,

I'm Rebecca, and Australian living in Rome. I love art, history, food, and creative writing! I am blogging for Creative English in the hope to combine all these passions and share them with you all. Happy reading!

REBECCA ALLISON

Creative English Teacher