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Where Does The Name "February" Come From?

Welcome to February! The month of love and Valentine's Day. And also the shortest month of the year. In the Northern hemisphere, this is the last month of winter. Ever since our entire calendar system was changed in the

medieval ages in 1582 to the Julian calendar, it is worth noting where the origins of the month names come from and why. (According to the old calendar system, our actual New Year is not until later-on in March, too.) Today I am dissecting “February” for you, what meaning it had to us in the past and what it therefore still might mean to us right now energetically.

Where Does The Name "February" Come From? February comes from the Latin word "februa" - which translates into “to cleanse.” This month used to host a month-long festival of purification and atonement, which took place around this time of year. No coincidence perhaps that Mardi Fras, Fasching and Carnival tend to fall into this time of year. All those festivities symbolize celebration, dressing up and wishing for the end of winter in order to welcome spring.

Traditionally, the goddess Februa is depicted as sitting in a shell, pouring water from a small jug and pulled by Pisces, represented by two fish.

The Roman Februalia was therefore an entire month of purification and atonement. Wouldn't it be great if we could have this tradition again? I think after a long winter, we can all use this month of cleansing and purification. Indeed, sometimes February feels just like that to me - oftentimes home-made spa days and me-times are built into this month.


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~Laura from Shamanic Self is a certified Shamanic Healer and Practitioner. She offers online courses and digital products that advance you on your spiritual journey.

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