Why is there a need for a calendar?
It takes 365 and one quarter days to travel all the way around the sun. The quarter is added up and every four years they give us an extra day, so that year there are 366 days in the year, they are called Leap Years, 2008 is the next one. It also days 24 hours for our planet to do one full rotation. The calendar that we’re all used to using is called the Gregorian calendar. In 1582 Pope Gregory XIII, for who is was named, decreed that the Gregorian calendar, which is a modification of the Julian calendar, would be the standard.
January was named after the Roman god of doors and gateways, his name was Janus. He was also the god of beginnings and endings, it is fitting that we named our first month after him, but as we continue I’m sure many of the months names will make sense to us.
February (it’s all coming back to me) was named after the Roman god Februus, the god of purification. Februss was probably chosen because of the intense cold and snow in February, the snow wipes away the ugliness of the early winter months. An interesting side note here, January and February were the last two months added to the Roman calendar because they originally just considered the winter to be monthless.
March was named after the Roman god of war, Mars and the month was originally called Martius. March was considered to be a lucky time to begin a war, probably because there was a chance the war would avoid being fought in winter, which would not only hinder supply lines, but would require more supplies in the first place.
April comes from the Latin word aprilis, which means to open. It is the time of year that things begin to reopen after shutting up tight for the winter, and not just our own doors, but buds and even the eyes of hibernating animals.
May was named for a Greek goddess Maia, who was the goddess of fertility. I suppose people are so happy with the warmer weather that they celebrate in their bedrooms.
June was named after the Roman goddess Juno, and hey so were some Canadian music awards! Juno was the Roman queen of the Gods. June was most likely named June after Juno because they wanted to name one of the months after a queen of the gods, and June is a pleasant month. The Greek queen of the gods if Hera, I’m glad they didn’t name a month after her.
July was named after Julius Caeser, who happened to be born in that month. July was previously called Quintilis, from Latin for fifth. If you remember January and February were added last so July was at one point the fifth month.
August was named in honor of Augustus Caeser. Rumour has it that Augustus wanted as many days in his month as Julius had in his, that’s why they both have thirty-one days.The rest of the months are all named in the same manner, a boring manner. I guess when the weather fails no one is interested in creating exciting names for the months.
September is named after the Latin word for seven (septem).
October is named for the Latin word for eight (octo).
November is named for the Latin word for nine (novem).
Decemberis named for the Latin word for ten (decem).
Keep in mind that the original calendar had only ten months so December was the tenth and last.There are only two completely natural measurements of time. These are the day and the year. Every other commonly used measure of time is man-made. One day is the amount of time it takes the Earth to rotate once about it’s axis. A “day” includes both nighttime and daytime, and it does not vary in length during the year. A year on the other hand is defined as the amount of time it takes the Earth to complete one orbit around the sun. As you can see, these two time periods do not rely on any man-made tools or clocks.The year and the day are independent of each other. We could imagine the Earth spinning faster around it’s axis. The days would be shorter, and there would be more of them in a year, but the lenght of the year would be the same. Similarly, we can imagine that the Earth has a smaller orbit. The length of the day would be the same, but the seasons would come faster and the year would be shorter.Now, if you pick a spot on the Earth’s orbit, and count how many times the earth rotates while it completes one orbit around the sun, you can find out how many days are in a year. It turns out that there are just about 365.25 rotations of the Earth in one year. Now, since we human beings like our calendars neat, which rounded off numbers, we make a couple of adjustments. What happens is that .25 part of a day is saved up. When we have enough of them to make a whole day, we have a leap year. Now you know why leap year is every 4 years. (Then it turns out that there’s a missing few seconds, but let’s skip that for now).
That’s why there are 365 days in a common year.
We all use calenders, who doesn’t?