The Buddhist calendar is a set of lunisolar calendars used in mainland Southeast Asian countries of Cambodia, Laos and Thailand as well as in Sri Lanka and Chinese populations of Malaysia and Singapore for religious or official occasions. While the calendars share a common lineage, they have minor but important variations such as intercalation schedules, month names and numbering, use of cycles, etc. In Thailand, the name Buddhist Era is a year numbering system shared by the traditional Thai lunisolar calendar and by the Thai solar calendar; the Southeast Asian lunisolar calendars are based on an older version of the Hindu calendar, which uses the sidereal year as the solar year. One major difference is that the Southeast Asian systems, unlike their Indian cousins, do not use apparent reckoning to stay in sync with the sidereal year. Instead, they employ their versions of the Metonic cycle. However, since the Metonic cycle is not accurate for sidereal years, the Southeast Asian calendar is drifting out of sync with the sidereal one day every 100 years.
Yet no coordinated structural reforms of the lunisolar calendar have been undertaken. Today, the traditional Buddhist lunisolar calendar is used for Theravada Buddhist festivals, no longer has the official calendar status anywhere; the Thai Buddhist Era, a renumbered Gregorian calendar, is the official calendar in Thailand. The calculation methodology of the current versions of Southeast Asian Buddhist calendars is based on that of the Burmese calendar, in use in various Southeast Asian kingdoms down to the 19th century under the names of Chula Sakarat and Jolak Sakaraj; the Burmese calendar in turn was based on the "original" Surya Siddhanta system of ancient India. One key difference with Indian systems is that the Burmese system has followed a variation of the Metonic cycle, it is unclear from where, how the Metonic system was introduced. The Burmese system, indeed the Southeast Asian systems, thus use a "strange" combination of sidereal years from Indian calendar in combination with the Metonic cycle better for tropical years.
In all Theravada traditions, the calendar's epochal year 0 date was the day in which the Buddha attained parinibbāna. However, not all traditions agree on when it took place. In Burmese Buddhist tradition, it was 13 May 544 BCE, but in Thailand, it was 11 March 545 BCE, the date which the current Thai lunisolar and solar calendars use as the epochal date. Yet, the Thai calendars for some reason have fixed the difference between their Buddhist Era numbering and the Christian/Common Era numbering at 543, which points to an epochal year of 544 BCE, not 545 BCE. In Myanmar, the difference between BE and CE can be 543 or 544 for CE dates, 544 or 543 for BCE dates, depending on the month of the Buddhist Era. In Sri Lanka, the difference between BE and CE is 544; the calendar recognizes two types of months: sidereal month. The Synodic months are used to compose the years while the 27 lunar sidereal days, alongside the 12 signs of the zodiac, are used for astrological calculations; the days of the month are counted in two halves and waning.
The 15th of the waxing is the civil full moon day. The civil new moon day is the last day of the month; because of the inaccuracy of the calendrical calculation systems, the mean and real New Moons coincide. The mean New Moon precedes the real New Moon; as the Synodic lunar month is 29.5 days, the calendar uses alternating months of 29 and 30 days. Various regional versions of Chula Sakarat/Burmese calendar existed across various regions of mainland Southeast Asia. Unlike Burmese systems, Lan Na, Lan Xang and Sukhothai systems refer to the months by numbers, not by names; this means reading ancient texts and inscriptions in Thailand requires constant vigilance, not just in making sure one is operating for the correct region, but for variations within regions itself when incursions cause a variation in practice. However, Cambodian month system, which begins with Margasirsa as the first month, demonstrated by the names and numbers; the Buddhist calendar is a lunisolar calendar in which the months are based on lunar months and years are based on solar years.
One of its primary objectives is to synchronize the lunar part with the solar part. The lunar months twelve of them, consist alternately of 29 days and 30 days, such that a normal lunar year will contain 354 days, as opposed to the solar year of ~365.25 days. Therefore, some form of addition to the lunar year is necessary; the overall basis for it is provided by cycles of 57 years. Eleven extra days are inserted in every 57 years, seven extra months of 30 days are inserted in every 19 years; this provides 20819 complete days to both calendars. This 57-year cycle would provide a mean year of about 365.2456 days and a mean month of about 29.530496 days, if not corrected. As such, the calendar adds an intercalary month in leap years and sometimes an intercalary day in great leap years; the intercalary month not only corrects the length of the year but corrects the accumulating error of the month to extent of half a day. The average length of the month is further corrected by adding a day to Nayon
The traditional China calendar, or Former Calendar, Traditional Calendar or Lunar Calendar, is a lunisolar calendar which reckons years and days according to astronomical phenomena. It is defined by GB/T 33661-2017, "Calculation and promulgation of the Chinese calendar", issued by the Standardisation Administration of China on 12 May 2017. Although modern day China uses the Gregorian calendar, the traditional Chinese calendar governs holidays in China and in overseas Chinese communities, it lists the dates of traditional Chinese holidays and guides people in selecting auspicious days for weddings, moving, or starting a business. Like Chinese characters, variants of this calendar are used in different parts of the Chinese cultural sphere. Korea and the Ryukyu Islands adopted the calendar, it evolved into Korean and Ryukyuan calendars; the main difference from the traditional Chinese calendar is the use of different meridians, which leads to some astronomical events—and calendar events based on them—falling on different dates.
The traditional Japanese calendar derived from the Chinese calendar, but its official use in Japan was abolished in 1873 as part of reforms after the Meiji Restoration. Calendars in Mongolia and Tibet have absorbed elements of the traditional Chinese calendar, but are not direct descendants of it. Days begin and end at midnight, months begin on the day of the new moon. Years begin on the second new moon after the winter solstice. Solar terms govern the end of each month. Written versions in ancient China included stems and branches of the year and the names of each month, including leap months as needed. Characters indicated whether a month was short; the traditional Chinese calendar was developed between 771 and 476 BC, during the Spring and Autumn period of the Eastern Zhou dynasty. Before the Zhou dynasty, solar calendars were used. One version of the solar calendar is the five-elements calendar. A 365-day year was divided into five phases of 73 days, with each phase corresponding to a Day 1 Wu Xing element.
A phase began followed by six 12-day weeks. Each phase consisted of two three-week months. Years began followed by a bǐngzǐ day and a 72-day fire phase. Other days were tracked using the Yellow River Map. Another version is a four-quarters calendar. Weeks were ten days long, with one month consisting of three weeks. A year had 12 months, with a ten-day week intercalated in summer as needed to keep up with the tropical year; the 10 Heavenly Stems and 12 Earthly Branches were used to mark days. A third version is the balanced calendar. A year was 365.25 days, a month was 29.5 days. After every 16th month, a half-month was intercalated. According to oracle bone records, the Shang dynasty calendar was a balanced calendar with 12 to 14 months in a year; the first lunisolar calendar was the Zhou calendar, introduced under the Zhou dynasty. This calendar set the beginning of the year at the day of the new moon before the winter solstice, it set the shàngyuán as the winter solstice of a dīngsì year, making the year it was introduced around 2,758,130.
Several competing lunisolar calendars were introduced by states fighting Zhou control during the Warring States period. The state of Lu issued its own Lu calendar. Jin issued the Xia calendar in AD 102, with a year beginning on the day of the new moon nearest the March equinox. Qin issued the Zhuanxu calendar, with a year beginning on the day of the new moon nearest the winter solstice. Song's Yin calendar began its year on the day of the new moon after the winter solstice; these calendars are known as the six ancient calendars, or quarter-remainder calendars, since all calculate a year as 365 1⁄4 days long. Months begin on the day of the new moon, a year has 12 or 13 months. Intercalary months are added to the end of the year; the Qiang and Dai calendars are modern versions of the Zhuanxu calendar, used by mountain peoples. After Qin Shi Huang unified China under the Qin dynasty in 221 BC, the Qin calendar was introduced, it followed most of the rules governing the Zhuanxu calendar, but the month order was that of the Xia calendar.
The intercalary month, known as the second Jiǔyuè, was placed at the end of the year. The Qin calendar was used into the Han dynasty. Emperor Wu of Han r. 141 – 87 BC introduced reforms halfway through his reign. His Taichu Calendar defined a solar year as 365 385⁄1539 days, the lunar month was 29 43⁄81 days; this calendar introduced the 24 solar terms. Solar terms were paired, with the 12 combined periods known as climate terms; the first solar term of the period was known as a pre-climate, the second was a mid-climate. Months were named for the mid-climat
The 1st century was the century AD 1 to AD 100 according to the Julian calendar. It is written as the 1st century AD or 1st century CE to distinguish it from the 1st century BC which preceded it; the 1st century is considered part of epoch, or historical period. During this period, North Africa and the Near East fell under increasing domination by the Roman Empire, which continued expanding, most notably conquering Britain under the emperor Claudius; the reforms introduced by Augustus during his long reign stabilized the empire after the turmoil of the previous century's civil wars. In the century the Julio-Claudian dynasty, founded by Augustus, came to an end with the suicide of Nero in AD 68. There followed the famous Year of Four Emperors, a brief period of civil war and instability, brought to an end by Vespasian, ninth Roman emperor, founder of the Flavian dynasty; the Roman Empire experienced a period of prosperity and dominance in this period and the First Century is remembered as part of the Empire's golden age.
The 1st century saw the appearance of Christianity. China continued to be dominated by the Han Dynasty, despite a fourteen-year interruption by the Xin dynasty under Wang Mang. Han rule was restored in AD 23; the capital was moved from Chang'an to Luoyang. Western Europe: Celtic, Germanic and Finnic tribal chiefdom and the Roman Empire Eastern Europe: Roman Empire, Sarmatian and Balt tribal chiefdoms North Africa: Roman Empire, Mauri and Gaetulian tribal chiefdoms West Africa: Gur, Kwa and Mande tribal chiefdoms Central Africa: Bantu tribes, collapsing Nok culture Nok civilization East Africa: Kingdom of Kush, Kingdom of Blemmyes, Kingdom of Aksum Southern Africa: Bantu tribes, Khoisan. Western Asia: Roman and Parthian Empires and Arabian Kingdoms, smaller tribes. Central Asia: Kushan Empire, Sarmatian and other Iranian tribal chiefdoms South Asia: Kushan Empire, Western Satraps, Satavahana Empire, Dravidian Kingdoms, Kingdom of Kalinga, Indo-Parthian Kingdom, Zhangzhung. Southeast Asia: Mandala of city-states, Kingdom of Funan East Asia: Han Dynasty, Yamatai and Xianbei tribal chiefdoms, Three Kingdoms of Korea.
North America: Central America: Mayan and Zapotec civilizations. Caribbean: South America: Nazca, Moche civilizations, Tairona tribal chiefdoms. Early 1st century – Augustus of Primaporta, is made, it is now kept in Braccio Nuovo, Rome. Early 1st century – Gemma Augustea is made, it is now kept at Vienna. Early 1st century – House of the Silver Wedding, Pompeii, is built. Excavated in 1893, the year of the silver wedding anniversary of Italy's King Humbert and his wife, Margherita of Savoy, who have supported archaeological fieldwork at Pompeii. Early 1st century - Inner shrine, Mie, Mie Prefecture, is built. Yayoi period. AD 1: Lions became extinct in Western Europe. AD 2: First census of China, the census is one of the most accurate in Chinese history. AD 6: Census of Quirinius. AD 7: Prince Cunobeline of Catuvellauni defeats the Trinovantes in England and establishes his capital at Camulodunum. AD 9: Three Roman legions were ambushed and destroyed at Teutoberg Forest by Germans under the leadership of Arminius.
AD 9: Prince Cunobeline is crowned King of Catuvellauni, his Kingdom dominates Southern England. AD 9 – 23: Wang Mang temporarily overthrew the Han dynasty of China. AD 9 – 23: Xin dynasty. AD 14: Augustus Caesar, first emperor of Rome, dies, his adopted son and son-in-law Tiberius is his successor. AD 25: The Han dynasty is restored by Liu Xiu who proclaims himself Emperor Guangwu of Han. AD 28 – 75: Emperor Ming of Han, Buddhism reaches China. Humans establish the Bunlap tribe, among others. C. AD 29: Jesus begins his ministry. C. AD 33: The Crucifixion of Jesus. C. AD 33 – 36: Conversion of Paul the Apostle. AD 40: Succession crisis erupts at King Cunobeline's court and his exiled younger son Prince Adminius flees to the court of Caligula in Rome. AD 40: Emperor Caligula plans to invade Britain, but forgets to bring an army, he instead declares war upon the sea, whipping it and taking shells as prisoners. AD 40 – 43: Revolts erupts in Vietnam by the Trung sisters. AD 42: King Cunobeline dies, his son Caratacus becomes King.
He and his brother conquer much of South-Eastern England, expanding territory into Atrebates, driving out King Verica. King Verica travels to Rome to the court of Claudius to help reclaim his throne. AD 43: Roman conquest of Britain begins. London is founded. AD 44: Death of Herod Agrippa. AD 41 – 54: Rachias, an ambassador sent from Sri Lanka to the court of Claudius. Buddhist monks in Sri Lanka first write down Buddha's teachings, creating the Pali canon; the regions of present-day Afghanistan and North India come under the control of the Kushans, a nomadic people forced out of northwest China by the Han Dynasty. Tacitus mentions the Suiones. Kaundinya, an Indian brahmin establishes the pre-Angkor Cambodian Kingdom of Funan; the Goths settle in northern Poland, which they called Gothiscandza, shape the Wielbark culture. C. AD 50: Christian Council of Jerusalem. Mid-1st century – Wall niche, from garden in Pompeii, is made, it is now kept at University of Cambridge, England. Mid-1st century – Detail of a wall painting in the House of M. Lucretius Fronto, Pompeii
The Republic of China calendar is the official calendar of the Republic of China. It is used to number the years for official purposes only in the Taiwan area after 1949, it was used in the Chinese mainland from 1912 until the establishment of the People's Republic of China in 1949. Following the Chinese imperial tradition of using the sovereign's era name and year of reign, official ROC documents use the Republic system of numbering years in which the first year was 1912, the year of the establishment of the Republic of China. Months and days are numbered according to the Gregorian calendar; the Gregorian calendar was adopted by the nascent Republic of China effective 1 January 1912 for official business, but the general populace continued to use the traditional Chinese calendar. The status of the Gregorian calendar was unclear between 1916 and 1921 while China was controlled by several competing warlords each supported by foreign colonial powers. From about 1921 until 1928 warlords continued to fight over northern China, but the Kuomintang or Nationalist government controlled southern China and used the Gregorian calendar.
After the Kuomintang reconstituted the Republic of China on 10 October 1928, the Gregorian calendar was adopted, effective 1 January 1929. The People's Republic of China has continued to use the Gregorian calendar since 1949. Despite the adoption of the Gregorian calendar, the numbering of the years was still an issue; the Chinese imperial tradition was to use the emperor's era year of reign. One alternative to this approach was to use the reign of the half-historical, half-legendary Yellow Emperor in the third millennium BC to number the years. In the early 20th century, some Chinese Republicans began to advocate such a system of continuously numbered years, so that year markings would be independent of the Emperor's regnal name; when Sun Yat-sen became the provisional president of the Republic of China, he sent telegrams to leaders of all provinces and announced the 13th day of 11th Month of the 4609th year of the Yellow Emperor's reign to be the first year of the Republic of China. The original intention of the Minguo calendar was to follow the imperial practice of naming the years according to the number of years the Emperor had reigned, a universally recognizable event in China.
Following the establishment of the Republic, hence the lack of an Emperor, it was decided to use the year of the establishment of the current regime. This reduced the issue of frequent change in the calendar, as no Emperor ruled more than 61 years in Chinese history — the longest being the Kangxi Emperor, who ruled from 1662–1722; as Chinese era names are traditionally two characters long, 民國 is employed as an abbreviation of 中華民國. The first year, 1912, is called 民國元年 and 2010, the "99th year of the Republic" is 民國九十九年, 民國99年, or 99. Based on Chinese National Standard CNS 7648: Data Elements and Interchange Formats—Information Interchange—Representation of Dates and Times, year numbering may use the Gregorian system as well as the ROC era. For example, 3 May 2004 may be written 2004-05-03 or ROC 93-05-03; the ROC era numbering happens to be the same as the numbering used by the Juche calendar of North Korea, because its founder, Kim Il-sung, was born in 1912. The years in Japan's Taishō period coincide with those of the ROC era.
In addition to the ROC's Minguo calendar, Taiwanese continue to use the lunar Chinese calendar for certain functions such as the dates of many holidays, the calculation of people's ages, religious functions. The use of the ROC era system extends beyond official documents. Misinterpretation is more in the cases when the prefix is omitted. There have been legislative proposals by pro-Taiwan Independence political parties, such as the Democratic Progressive Party to abolish the Republican calendar in favor of the Gregorian calendar. To convert any Gregorian calendar year between 1912 and the current year to Minguo calendar, 1912 needs to be subtracted from the year in question 1 added. East Asian age reckoning Public holidays in Taiwan
Balinese saka calendar
The Balinese saka calendar is one of two calendars used on the Indonesian island of Bali. Unlike the 210-day pawukon calendar, it is based on the phases of the Moon, is the same length as the Gregorian year. Based on a lunar calendar, the saka year comprises sasih, of 30 days each. However, because the lunar cycle is shorter than 30 days, the lunar year has a length of 354 or 355 days, the calendar is adjusted to prevent it losing synchronization with the lunar or solar cycles; the months are adjusted by allocating two lunar days to one solar day every 9 weeks. This day is called ngunalatri, Sanskrit for "minus one night". To stop the Saka from lagging behind the Gregorian calendar – as happens with the Islamic calendar, an extra month, known as an intercalary month, is added after the 11th month, or after the 12th month; the length of these months is calculated according to the normal 63-day cycle. An intercalary month is added whenever necessary to prevent the final day of the 7th month, known as Tilem Kapitu, from falling in the Gregorian month of December.
The names the twelve months are taken from a mixture of Old Balinese and Sanskrit words for 1 to 12, are as follows: Kasa Karo Katiga Kapat Kalima Kanem Kapitu Kawalu Kasanga Kadasa Jyestha SadhaEach month begins the day after a new moon and has 15 days of waxing moon until the full moon 15 days of waning, ending on the new moon. Both sets of days are numbered 1 to 15; the first day of the year is the day after the first new moon in March. Note, that Nyepi falls on the first day of Kadasa, that the years of the Saka era are counted from that date; the calendar is 78 years behind the Gregorian calendar, is calculated from the beginning of the Saka Era in India. It is used alongside the 210-day Balinese pawukon calendar, Balinese festivals can be calculated according to either year; the Indian saka calendar was used for royal decrees as early as the ninth century CE. The same calendar was used in Java until Sultan Agung replaced it with the Javanese calendar in 1633; the Balinese Hindu festival of Nyepi, the day of silence, marks the start of the Saka year.
Tilem Kepitu, the last day of the 7th month, is known as Siva Ratri, is a night dedicated to the god Shiva. Devotees stay up all meditate. There are another 24 ceremonial days in the Saka year celebrated at Purnama. Eiseman, Fred B. Jr, Bali: Sekalia and Niskala Volume I: Essays on Religion and Art pp 182–185, Periplus Editions, 1989 ISBN 0-945971-03-6 Haer, Debbie Guthrie. ISBN 981 3018 496 Hobart, Angela. ISBN 0 631 17687 X Ricklefs, M. C.
Indian national calendar
The Indian national calendar, sometimes called the Shalivahana Shaka calendar. It is used, alongside the Gregorian calendar, by The Gazette of India, in news broadcasts by All India Radio and in calendars and communications issued by the Government of India; the Saka calendar is used in Java and Bali among Indonesian Hindus. Nyepi, the "Day of Silence", is a celebration of the Saka new year in Bali. Nepal's Nepal Sambat evolved from the Saka calendar. Prior to colonization, the Philippines used to apply the Saka calendar as well as suggested by the Laguna Copperplate Inscription; the term may ambiguously refer to the Hindu calendar. The historic Shalivahana era calendar is still used, it has years. The calendar months follow the signs of the tropical zodiac rather than the sidereal zodiac used with the Hindu calendar. Chaitra has 30 days and starts on March 22, except in leap years, when it has 31 days and starts on March 21; the months in the first half of the year all have 31 days, to take into account the slower movement of the sun across the ecliptic at this time.
The names of the months are derived from older, Hindu lunisolar calendars, so variations in spelling exist, there is a possible source of confusion as to what calendar a date belongs to. Years are counted in the Saka era. To determine leap years, add 78 to the Saka year – if the result is a leap year in the Gregorian calendar the Saka year is a leap year as well, its structure is just like the Persian calendar. Senior Indian Astrophysicist Meghnad Saha was the head of the Calendar Reform Committee under the aegis of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research. Other members of the Committee were: A. C. Banerjee, K. K. Daftari, J. S. Karandikar, Gorakh Prasad, R. V. Vaidya and N. C. Lahiri, it was Saha's effort. The task before the Committee was to prepare an accurate calendar based on scientific study, which could be adopted uniformly throughout India, it was a mammoth task. The Committee had to undertake a detailed study of different calendars prevalent in different parts of the country. There were thirty different calendars.
The task was further complicated by the fact that religion and local sentiments were integral to those calendars. India's first prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, in his preface to the Report of the Committee, published in 1955, wrote: “They represent past political divisions in the country.... Now that we have attained Independence, it is desirable that there should be a certain uniformity in the calendar for our civic and other purposes, this should be done on a scientific approach to this problem.” Usage started at 1 Chaitra 1879, Saka Era, or 22 March 1957. Report of the Calendar Reform Committee – online link. Mapping Time: The Calendar and its History by E. G. Richards, 1998, pp. 184–185. Calendars and their History Indian Calendars Positional astronomy in India Indian National Calendar abstract