The law of God, given by Moses to the Jews, ordained that a woman, after childbirth, should continue for a certain time in a state which the law calls unclean, during which she was not to appear in public, nor presume to touch anything consecrated to God.
This term was 40 days for a boy and double that time for a daughter.
At the end of the term, the mother was to bring to the door of the tabernacle, or Temple, a lamb and a young pigeon, or turtle-dove, as an offering to God.
These being sacrificed to Almighty God by the priest, the woman was cleansed of the legal impurity and reinstated in her former privileges.
A young pigeon, or turtle-dove, was required by all, rich or poor; a second dove was allowed to be substituted if the expense of a lamb was too great.
Mary being a good and faithful Jewess complies exactly with all that the law requires of her.
This day is celebrated on February 2.