February is the second month of the year, coming between January and March, with 28 days in common years, and 29 days in leap years. In Sweden in 1732 the month had 30 days. This was to make the calendar match to the rest of the world. In 1930 and 1931, February had 30 days in the Soviet Union because the government changed all the months to be 30 days long. In 2020, February had 29 days in it because 2020 was a leap year. The name comes either from the Roman god Februus or else from "februa", the festivals of purification celebrated in Rome every fifteenth of this month.
February begins on the same day of the week as March and November in common years, and August in leap years. February always ends on the same day of the week as October, and additionally, January in common years.
1. The Month
February is one of the last two months to be added to the calendar at the beginning of the year the other is January. This is because in the original Roman calendar, the two months of winter, when not much would happen in agriculture, did not have names.
February is the second month of the year, coming between January and March, and is also the shortest month, with 28 days in a common year, and 29 days in a leap year. February begins on the same day of the week as March and November in common years and on the same day of the week as August in leap years. February ends on the same day of the week as January in common years and October every year, as each others last days are exactly 4 weeks 28 days and 35 weeks 245 days apart respectively. In a leap year, February is the only month to begin and end on the same day of the week.
Every year, February starts on the same day of the week as June of the previous year, as each others first days are exactly 35 weeks 245 days apart. In common years, February finishes on the same day of the week as May of the previous year, and in leap years, August and November of the previous year.
In common years immediately before other common years, February starts on the same day of the week as August of the following year, and in leap years and years immediately before that, May of the following year. In years immediately before common years, February finishes on the same day of the week as July of the following year, and in years immediately before leap years, April and December of the following year.
February is also the only month of the calendar that, once every six years and twice every 11 years consecutively, either back into the past or forward into the future, will have 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, this was observed in 2010 and can be traced back 11 years to 1999, 6 years back to 1993, 11 years back to 1982, 11 years back to 1971 and 6 years back to 1965, and will be observed in 2021. In countries that start their week on a Sunday, it occurs in a common year starting on Thursday, with the next occurrence in 2026, and previous occurrences in 2015 11 years earlier than 2026, 2009 6 years earlier than 2015, 1998 11 years earlier than 2009 and 1987 11 years earlier than 1998. This works unless 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.
From circa 700 BC, when Numa Pompilius, the second king of Rome, added it to the calendar, February had 23 days and 24 days on some of every second year, until 46 BC when Julius Caesar assigned it 29 days on every fourth year and 28 days otherwise. Leap year Day, February 29, is added in every year that can be divided equally by four, such as 2012 and 2016, but this does not apply when the year ending in "00" at the turn of the century does not divide equally into 400. This means that 1600 and 2000 were leap years in the Gregorian calendar, but 1700, 1800, and 1900 were rather common years. This is where the Julian calendar calculated dates differently, as it always repeated February 29 every four years.
February is a winter month in the Northern Hemisphere and a summer month in the Southern Hemisphere. In each hemisphere, it is the seasonal equivalent of August in the other. In weather lore, Groundhog Day, in the United States, is set to decide what the weather will be like for the rest of the winter.
Februarys flower is the violet and its birthstone is the amethyst. The meaning of the amethyst is sincerity. The zodiac signs for February are Aquarius January 21 to February 19, and Pisces February 20 to March 20.
2.1. Events in February Fixed Events
- February 2 - Candlemas Western Christianity
- February 21 - Language Movement Day Bangladesh
- February 25 - People Power Day Philippines
- February 24 - Flag Day Mexico
- February 4 - Day of the Armed Struggle Angola
- February 3 - Heroes Day Mozambique
- February 23 - National Day Brunei
- February 12 - Union Day Burma
- February 25 - National Day Kuwait
- February 29 - Leap day
- February 3 - Veterans Day Thailand
- February 27 - National Day Dominican Republic
- February 15 - Day of the Flag of Canada
- February 2 - World Wetlands Day
- February 7 - Independence Day Grenada
- February 17 - Celebrated as Independence Day in Kosovo
- February 12 - Darwin Day
- February 28 - Peace Memorial Day Taiwan
- February 21 - Biikebrennen, celebrated in Northern Schleswig-Holstein Germany and southern Denmark
- February 5 - Constitution Day Mexico
- February 23 - Defender of the Fatherland Day Russia
- February 28 - National Science Day India
- February 6 - Sami National Day
- February 18 - International Aspergers Day
- February 1/2 - Imbolc Paganism
- February 14 - Statehood Day in Arizona and Oregon
- February 14 - Valentines Day
- February 4 - Independence Day Sri Lanka
- February 1 - Freedom Day United States
- February 21 - International Mother Language Day
- February 23 - Republic Day Guyana
- February 5 - Unity Day Burundi
- February 2 - Constitution Day Philippines
- February 22 - Independence Day Saint Lucia
- February 11 - National Foundation Day Japan
- February 16 - Independence Day Lithuania
- February 12 - Abraham Lincolns birthday United States
- February 12 - Youth Day Venezuela
- February 18 - Independence Day the Gambia
- February 2 - Inventors Day Thailand
- February 10 - Fenkil Day Eritrea
- February 5 - Runebergs Birthday Finland
- February 22 - George Washingtons birthday United States
- February 2 - Groundhog Day United States
- February 25 - Soviet Occupation Day Georgia
- February 4 - World Cancer Day
- February 6 - Waitangi Day New Zealand
- February 28 - Kalevala Day Finland
- February 6 - Ronald Reagan Day California
- February 26 - Liberation Day Kuwait
- February 10 - Feast of St. Pauls Shipwreck Malta
- February 24 - Independence Day Estonia
2.2. Events in February Moveable and month-long Events
- Carnival - most famous ones take place in Rio de Janeiro and Venice
- Ash Wednesday, start of Lent - can fall between February 4 and March 10
- Lent-related observances in Western Christianity
- Chinese New Year, falls on a new moon between January 21 and February 21.
- Shrove Monday - can fall between February 2 and March 8
- Shrove Tuesday Pancake Day - can fall between February 3 and March 9
- Six Nations rugby union, tournament running from early February to mid-March between England, France, Ireland, Italy, Scotland and Wales.
- Presidents Day United States - Third Monday in February, celebrating the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and George Washington.
- LGBT History Month United Kingdom
- Winter Olympics are often held in February, last in 2010, and next in 2014.
- Black History Month Canada and United States
- Super Bowl American football, usually on the first Sunday in February
3. Selection of Historical Events
- February 10, 1763 - In the Treaty of Paris, France has to give Quebec to Great Britain.
- February 24, 1918 - Estonia declares independence.
- February 16, 1959 - Fidel Castro becomes leader of Cuba.
- February 23, 1970 - Guyana becomes a republic.
- February 13, 1668 - Spain recognizes Portugal as an independent country.
- February 27, 2010 - The 2010 Cauquenes earthquake strikes Central Chile, causing major destruction and killing around 500 people.
- February 5, 1818 - Jean-Baptiste Bernadotte becomes King of Sweden.
- February 11, 2011 - Hosni Mubarak resigns as President of Egypt, after widespread protests.
- February 19, 1861 - Serfdom ends in Russia.
- February 18, 1965 - The Gambia becomes independent.
- February 11, 2013 - Pope Benedict XVI announces his resignation, effective at the end of the month.
- February 6, 1788 - Massachusetts becomes a US State.
- February 21, 1613 - Mikhail I of Russia becomes Tasr, starting the Romanov Dynasty.
- February 15, 2013 - A meteorite explodes over Chelyabinsk, western Siberia, Russia, injuring over 1.000 people.
- February 11, 1990 - In South Africa, Nelson Mandela is released from prison.
- February 22, 1979 - Saint Lucia becomes independent.
- February 25, 1921 - Soviet Russia occupies Tbilisi, Georgia.
- February 20, 1472 - Orkney and Shetland become part of Scotland.
- February 22, 1862 - Jefferson Davis officially becomes President of the Confederate States of America.
- February 27, 1844 - The Dominican Republic becomes independent from Haiti.
- February 29, 2004 - Jean-Bertrand Aristide resigns as President of Haiti following a popular rebel uprising.
- February 7, 1979 - Grenada becomes independent.
- February 29, 1984 - Pierre Trudeau announces his resignation as Prime Minister of Canada.
- February 17, 2008 - Kosovo declares independence from Serbia, which does not recognize it as an independent state.
- February 1, 2003 - Space Shuttle Columbia breaks up on re-entry into the Earths atmosphere, killing all seven astronauts on board.
- February 29, 1960 - An earthquake strikes Agadir, Morocco, killing 3.000 people.
- February 12, 1818 - Bernardo OHiggins signs the Independence of Chile near Concepcion.
- February 1, 1884 - The first edition of the Oxford English Dictionary is published.
- February 25, 1947 - Prussia no longer exists from this date.
- February 4, 2004 - Facebook is founded.
- February 28, 1922 - Egypt declares independence.
- February 18, 1930 - Clyde Tombaugh discovers the dwarf planet Pluto.
- February 26, 1993 - A terrorist bomb explodes in a car park under the World Trade Center, New York City.
- February 21, 1958 - The peace symbol is designed.
- February 3, 1931 - A magnitude 7.8 earthquake hits the cities of Napier and Hastings, New Zealand.
- February 10, 1863 - The fire extinguisher is patented.
- February 16, 1918 - Lithuania declares independence.
- February 12, 1809 - Charles Darwin and Abraham Lincoln are born on the same day.
- February 2, 1913 - Grand Central Terminal in New York City is opened for the first time.
- February 21, 1848 - Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels publish the Communist Manifesto.
- February 1, 1953 - In the night from January 31, parts of the Netherlands, Belgium and the United Kingdom are severely flooded.
- February 28, 1986 - Prime Minister of Sweden Olof Palme is murdered.
- February 15, 1965 - The Maple Leaf Flag becomes the Flag of Canada.
- February 14, 1779 - James Cook is killed by local people in the Hawaiian Islands.
- February 6, 1840 - The Treaty of Waitangi is signed in New Zealand, officially making it a British colony.
- February 25, 1986 - Through the People Power Revolution, Corazon Aquino becomes President of the Philippines.
- February 5, 1909 - Leo Baekeland announces the creation of Bakelite.
- February 20, 1929 - American Samoa becomes a US territory.
- February 26, 1815 - Napoleon Bonaparte escapes from exile on the island of Elba.
- February 8, 1542 - Mary, Queen of Scots is executed.
- February 4, 1948 - Ceylon, present-day Sri Lanka, becomes independent.
- February 13, 1931 - New Delhi becomes the capital city of India.
- February 6, 1952 - Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom becomes Queen.
- February 22, 2011 - A strong earthquake strikes the city of Christchurch, New Zealand, killing 181 people, and destroying the citys cathedral.
- February 23, 1941 - Plutonium is first produced and isolated by Glenn T. Seaborg.
- February 3, 1959 - Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and The Big Bopper die in a plane crash in Iowa on the "Day The Music Died".
- In a leap year, February 29 falls on the same day of the week as October 31.
- Two of the most highly rated US Presidents were born in February - Abraham Lincoln and George Washington. Other US Presidents born in February are Ronald Reagan and William Henry Harrison, who was the shortest-serving President.
- In February the Sun passes through zodiac constellations Capricornus and Aquarius.
- The Amethyst and the Pearl are considered birthstones of the month of February.
- The signs of the zodiac within the month of February are Aquarius January 21 to February 19 and Pisces February 20 to March 20.
- The birth flower of February is the violet.
- February is the shortest month of the year.
- Nicolaus Copernicus and Galileo Galilei, two famous astronomers, were both born in February.
- year this is the last day of February and the next day is March 1. In Leap years, February 28 is followed by February 29. In some countries, people
- February 2 is the 33rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. There are 332 days remaining until the end of the year 333 in leap years 962 Official
- February 6 is the 37th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. There are 328 days remaining until the end of the year 329 in leap years 1643 - Abel
- February 3 is the 34th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. There are 331 days remaining until the end of the year 332 in leap years 1112 - Ramon
- February 1 is the 32nd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. There are 333 days remaining until the end of the year 334 in leap years 1327 Edward
- February 8 is the 39th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. There are 326 days remaining until the end of the year 327 in leap years 421 - Constantius
- February 5 is the 36th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. There are 329 days remaining until the end of the year 330 in leap years 146 BC
- February 7 is the 38th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. There are 327 days remaining until the end of the year 328 in leap years 457 Leo
- February 4 is the 35th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. There are 330 days remaining until the end of the year 331 in leap years 211 Roman
- February 25 is the 56th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. There are 309 days remaining until the end of the year 310 in leap years 138 Roman