History of calender dating

The year is solar, one turn of the earth round the sun, but it fits none of the other measures; whether you divide it by days, weeks or months, there is always a bit left over – hence leap years.

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All that is logical enough, but the calendar was not designed and set running by a technician at midnight on 1.1.0001; it developed historically. But nor was there ever a year one, two or three, or for that matter a year 100, 200 or 300.1 January is not the date of Christ's birth, but the feast of the circumcision.This meant a lot to the early generations of Christians within the Jewish tradition, but after the victory of Roman-style Christianity this was ignored in favour of a birthday commemoration fixed to the pagan midwinter feast of 25 December, timed to mark the approximate point where the days start getting longer after the winter solstice.When Constantine Christianised the Roman Empire in the fourth century AD, the Roman calendar became the Christian calendar.It was adopted as such in AD 325, at the first General Council of the Christian church at Nicea, in what is now western Turkey.

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