January and February
The words for today are – JANUARY, and FEBRUARY.
January, the first month, comes from the name of the Roman God of beginnings and endings.
He was – JANUS. He was represented as having two faces in opposite directions which is why he was positioned at the door. In this way he could see who was coming and who was leaving. The words – JANITOR- meaning someone who is in charge of the doors of a building and – JANUS FACED – meaning someone who is deceitful – come from the name of this Roman deity.
FEBRUARY, the second month, comes from the Roman feast of Purification – FEBRUARIUS.
This pagan feast was celebrated on the 15 of February in honor of the goddess – JUNO – who was the patron goddess of marriage. The Romans honored her as their goddess of fertility. This is the reason why Valentine’s Day is celebrated the day before. The Christians decided to offset the pagan influence by instituting their own festival. This happened many centuries after the decapitation of Bishop Valentine.