noun, plural Jan·u·ar·ies.

  1. the first month of the year, containing 31 days. Abbreviation: Jan.

noun plural -aries

  1. the first month of the year, consisting of 31 days

late 13c., Ieneuer, from Old North French Genever, Old French Jenvier (Modern French Janvier), attested from early 12c. in Anglo-French, from Latin Ianuarius (mensis) “(the month) of Janus,” to whom the month was sacred as the beginning of the year (see Janus; cf. Italian Gennajo, Provençal Genovier, Portuguese Janeiro). The form was gradually Latinized by c.1400. Replaced Old English geola se æfterra “Later Yule.” In Chaucer, a type-name for an old man.

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