The second month of the year. February comes from the Latin februarius mensis, which translates as 'the month of purification'. This was actually the last month of the Roman calendar; on the ides of this last month they held a feast of purification.

Nowadays, February is:

Birthstone: Amethyst (Sincerity)

Flower: Violet or Primrose.

Feb"ru*a*ry (?), n. [L. Februarius, orig., the month of expiation, because on the fifteenth of this month the great feast of expiation and purification was held, fr. februa, pl., the Roman festival or purification; akin to februare to purify, expiate.]

The second month in the year, said to have been introduced into the Roman calendar by Numa. In common years this month contains twenty-eight days; in the bissextile, or leap year, it has twenty-nine days.

 

© Webster 1913.

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