The Gregorian calendar, also known as the solar calenfar, is the time table that is being used in the present times. The contemporary calendar has been changed many a times, from the original calendar that began the daily dairy. Apart from serving as the present day international civil calendar, the Gregorian calendar also regulates the ceremonial cycle of the Roman Catholic and Protestant churches. As a matter of fact, the calendar was originally aimed for Ecclesiastical purposes. Though many other calendars are also in use today, they are mostly restricted to particular religion and cultures. Read on to know all about the history of the widely used Gregorian calendar.
Interesting & Amazing Information On Origin & Background Of Gregorian Calendar
The history of the Gregorian calendar can be traced to the times when Rome was ruled by the empire of Roumulus. In those times, the days and months of the Roman calendar were set according to the cycles of the sun and the moon. Rather than the 12 months in a year today, the Roman calendar was considered to be ten months long. The New Year commenced in spring, on March 1, and ended in December. A new calendar was introduced by Numa, the new ruler who succeeded Romulus.
The new calendar had 12 months and ended in February. The beginning of the year was later changed from March 1 to January 1. This was marked as the beginning of the civil year. The number of days in the civil year was 365. However, a new Julian calendar was introduced by Julius Caesar, the famed Roman ruler. The Julian calendar began from the 1st of January, in the year 45 B.C. Finally, a new version of Gregorian calendar was introduced by Pope Gregory XIII in the year 1582. This was the calendar that evolved into the present day Gregorian calendar that we use.
In the Gregorian calendar, Sunday was originally named after the sun. Monday was originally called the moon. The next day to Monday was named after mars, the warrior god of Rome. However, the name was later changed to Tiu’s day for the Teutonic warrior god. Tiu’s Day gradually evolved into Tuesday, as we call it today. The day after Tuesday was called Wotan’s day, for the Roman god of peace. This was later changed to Woden’s day, today known as Wednesday, after a Teutonic god. Thursday, originally was called the Jupiter’s Day, tracing its name to the Roman god of thunder and lightening. Later, the name was changed to Thor’s Day, after the ancient thunder god, which finally evolved into Thursday.
The fifth day of the week was named after the Roman goddess, who was symbolic of spring. Later, it became the Frigg’s day, after the Scandinavian goddess of love. Finally, Frigg’s day became Friday, as we know it today. There was no major change in the sixth day of the week, as it was already known in the Gregorian calendar as the Saturn’s day, named after the Roman goddess of harvest. As time passed, it evolved into the present day Saturday. The months in the Gregorian calendar were borrowed from the Julian calendar. For instance, January was named after Janus, the god of beginnings.
In the calendar, February came from Februa, a big feast. March was named after the god of war, Mars. April derived its name from the name of Greek goddess, Aphrodite. The month of May was named after another goddess, known as Maia. June’s name was derived from Juno, an ancient goddess. The months of July and August were named after Julius Caesar and Augustus, who succeed Caesar’s throne. The last four months of the year were named according to the numerical placement in the year. The old names of all the months in the Gregorian calendar evolved over time, to assume their modern names.