February was the last month of the year for the Romans. It got its name in honor of Febra - the god of death, since the Romans dedicated this month to the memory of their deceased ancestors. And the Slavs called it "snow", at this time the winds swept huge snowdrifts. And in some provinces, February was also called "bokogrey", after a harsh winter the sun sometimes began to warm up. It was possible to "warm up the sides".
14 interesting facts about February
- Why is February the shortest month of the year? The calendar we are accustomed to came from Ancient Rome. By decree of Julius Caesar, even months were supposed to have 30 days, and in odd ones one day more. But February, the last month of the year, did not even get 30 days, only 29. And in 14 BC, after the death of Octavian Augustus, it was decided to add one more day to his "nominal" month, now they turned out to be in August 31. And we took this day from February. Now there are only 28 days left in it, and only once every four years - 29.
- In 1929, the Soviet Union tried to reform the calendar. It was planned that the year will consist of 72 five days. It turned out 360 days, plus 5 more holidays. In this case, there would be 30 days in February as well. The project was never fully implemented, since December 1, 1931, the calendar was returned to its previous form.
- Groundhog Day is celebrated annually on February 2 in the United States and Canada. On this day, by the behavior of a marmot crawling out of a hole, one can predict when spring will come. If the weather is cloudy on this day, the marmot, not seeing its own shadow, calmly leaves the hole. This means that the arrival of spring is not long to wait. And if the day is sunny, the marmot, seeing its shadow, again hides for cover. This is evidence that real warmth will not come soon.
- On February 15, the Orthodox Church celebrates the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord. On this day, a significant event for Christians took place - the meeting in Jerusalem of the Infant Jesus and the righteous elder Simeon. But, in Russia, commoners explained the origin of the holiday in their own way, they met winter and summer. The sun turned to summer, and winter to frost.
- Brown bears have cubs in February. But their relatives, polar bears, have a holiday at the end of February - International Polar Bear Day. Currently, there are no more than 25, 000 of them left in the world. They have perfectly adapted to living conditions in the polar latitudes, but the melting of the Arctic ice can lead to a sharp decline in their numbers.
- According to astrologers, a person born on February 29 is distinguished by innovative thinking and unique abilities. And in the Henriksen family from Norway, three children were born on February 29. In 1960, a daughter, Heidi, was born, on February 29, 1964, a son, Olav, and exactly 4 years later, Leif-Martin.
- Former Tasmanian Prime Minister James Milne Wilson was born and died on February 29th. Only the difference between these two dates was 68 years. The politician was born in 1812 and died in 1880.
- The famous uprising on Senate Square in St. Petersburg took place on December 14, 1825. Therefore, the participants in this event are called "Decembrists". But the future Decembrists created their first secret society, the Union of Salvation, on February 1, 1816.
- The entertaining French newspaper "Sapper's Candle" publishes a crossword puzzle in each issue. But the answer can be seen in the next issue. however, this will not happen soon - in four years. The thing is that this unusual newspaper comes out only on February 29th. The first issue went on sale in 1980.
- If we have February - snows, blizzards and frosts, then in Antarctica this time is the height of a short summer. For example, at the Vostok polar station, the air "warms up" to minus 40 degrees. And in July and August there are the most severe frosts here - up to 70 degrees and below.
- The duel between Pushkin and Dantes took place on February 8 (new style), 1837. It was on this day that the great Russian poet was mortally wounded and died two days later. By the way, Pushkin's killer, Georges Charles Dantes, was born on February 5, 1812. A few days before the duel, he celebrated his 25th birthday.
- The decree on the opening of the Russian Academy of Sciences was signed by Emperor Peter the Great on February 8, 1724. Interestingly, the emperor died exactly one year later - on February 8, 1725. By this time, the academicians had not even had time to start work, there was still an active search for scientists throughout Europe.
- February is the last month of winter. Therefore, our ancestors tried at this time to predict the weather for spring and autumn. It was believed that if February was warm, then a good harvest should not have been expected. It was possible to hope for a fertile year only if there were severe frosts all month.
- The large amount of snow in February did not frighten the peasants at all. It is another matter if there was no snow at all at the end of winter, then, according to popular belief, there will certainly be a drought in summer. And on February 29, it was not recommended to start any work, anyway it would turn out to be pointless.