The secret of number 28
The secret of number 28 You wake up early on a warm day in 2024. After carrying out your usual routine and making your coffee, you begin surfing through the newspaper. The date grabs your attention; it is 29 February 2024. It has been a long since you have seen this date: it was in 2020. You look in your to-do-list to see what the day carries for you. Now, you are surprised; you realize it is your birthday. No wonder you have forgotten; this day only comes every 4 years! In fact, this question has forever crossed my mind. Why is February the shortest month of the year? Let me tell you it is a long story and has started in the Ancient Roman age.
The narrative starts with the Roman calendar following the lunar cycle. The year consisted of 10 months only.
It started in March and ended in December with only summer, spring, and fall upon. Winter was not counted among, because farmers stopped working on their fields. In Winter, People only cared for providing ways of life.
Then, the Roman emperor Numa Pompilius came up with a new idea.
He suggested adding 2 months of the year to be 12 months for the 12 lunar cycle.
Even numbers stood for bad luck according to Roman mythology. Therefore, he decided to subtract a day from months with an even number of days.
After some calculations, 2 months were added (January and February) to the end of the Roman calendar. February was at the end of the year with 28 days.
A logical question pops up, isn't 28 an even number? I tell you, yeah. February kept its 28 days because it had the name of Februus (the god of purification). Moreover, February was linked to some ancient rituals related to purifying the soul. Not to mention it was at the end of the year, so it didn't really matter. As the years passed and the seasons rotated, the calendar was disordered. It kept getting complicated until Julius Caesar came and put an end to the problem.
He replaced the lunar calendar with the solar calendar. January and February became at the beginning of the year, and the year became 365 days and a quarter. However, February kept its 28 days. July and August were named after Julius Caesar and Augustus Caesar, glorifying their efforts in solving the matter.
This was the story of February. Regarding 29 February coming every 4 years, it comes following the piling up 4 quarter-days of every year to form the leap year. Back to you on 29 February 2024, don't worry, you won't celebrate alone, as about 4 million people were born on this day. So they get older every 4 years.
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