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"Iranian New Year's celebration in "Sanandaj on date and time of "March equinox.

New Year is the "time or day at which a new "calendar year begins and the calendar's "year count increments by one.

Many cultures celebrate the event in some manner[1] and the 1st day of January is often marked as a "national holiday.

In the "Gregorian calendar, the most widely used calendar system today, New Year occurs on January 1 ("New Year's Day). This was also the case both in the "Roman calendar (at least after about 713 BC) and in the "Julian calendar that succeeded it.

Other calendars have been used historically in different parts of the world; some calendars count years numerically, while others do not.

During the "Middle Ages in western Europe, while the Julian calendar was still in use, authorities moved New Year's Day, depending upon locale, to one of several other days, including March 1, March 25, Easter, September 1, and December 25. Beginning in 1582, the "adoptions of the Gregorian calendar and changes to the "Old Style and New Style dates meant the various local dates for New Year's Day changed to using one fixed date, January 1.

The widespread official adoption of the Gregorian calendar and marking January 1 as the beginning of a new year is almost global now. Regional or local use of other calendars continue, along with the cultural and religious practices that accompany them. In "Latin America, various native cultures continue the observation of traditions according to their own calendars. Israel, China, India, and other countries continue to celebrate New Year on different dates.


By month or season[edit]


"Baby New Year 1905 chases old 1904 into the history books in this cartoon by "John T. McCutcheon.

East Asian New Year[edit]




Mid-April (Spring in the Northern Hemisphere)[edit]

The new year of many "South and Southeast Asian calendars falls between April 13-15, marking the beginning of spring.



Autumn in the Northern Hemisphere[edit]



Opening of the Year[7]
"Wpt Rnpt[8]
in "hieroglyphs

Christian liturgical year[edit]

The early development of the Christian liturgical year coincided with the "Roman Empire (east and west), and later the "Byzantine Empire, both of which employed a taxation system labeled the "Indiction, the years for which began on September 1. This timing may account for the ancient church's establishment of September 1 as the beginning of the liturgical year, despite the official Roman New Year's Day of January 1 in the Julian calendar, because the indiction was the principal means for counting years in the empires, apart from the reigns of the Emperors. The September 1 date prevailed throughout all of Christendom for many centuries, until subsequent divisions eventually produced revisions in some places.

After the "sack of Rome in 410, communications and travel between east and west deteriorated. Liturgical developments in Rome and Constantinople did not always match, although a rigid adherence to form was never mandated in the church. Nevertheless, the principal points of development were maintained between east and west. The Roman and Constantinopolitan liturgical calendars remained compatible even after the "East-West Schism in 1054. Separations between the Roman Catholic "ecclesiastical year and "Eastern Orthodox liturgical calendar grew only over several centuries' time.

During those intervening centuries, the Roman Catholic "ecclesiastic year was moved to the first day of "Advent, the Sunday nearest to "St. Andrew's Day (November 30). According to the "Latin Rite of the Catholic Church, the liturgical year begins at 4:00 PM on the Saturday preceding the fourth Sunday prior to December 25 (between November 26 and December 2). By the time of the Reformation (early 16th century), the Roman Catholic general calendar provided the initial basis for the calendars for the liturgically-oriented Protestants, including the "Anglican and "Lutheran Churches, who inherited this observation of the liturgical new year.

The present-day Eastern Orthodox liturgical calendar is the virtual culmination of the ancient eastern development cycle, though it includes later additions based on subsequent history and lives of saints. It still begins on September 1, proceeding annually into the "Nativity of the Theotokos (September 8) and "Exaltation of the Cross (September 14) to the celebration of "Nativity of Christ (Christmas), through his death and resurrection (Pascha/Easter), to his Ascension and the "Dormition of the Theotokos ("falling asleep" of the "Virgin Mary, August 15). This last feast is known in the Roman Catholic church as the Assumption.The dating of "September 1" is according to the "new" (revised) Julian calendar or the "old" (standard) Julian calendar, depending on which is used by a particular Orthodox Church. Hence, it may fall on 1 September on the civil calendar, or on 14 September (between 1900 and 2099 inclusive).

The "Coptic and "Ethiopian liturgical calendars are unrelated to these systems but instead follow the "Alexandrian calendar which fixed the wandering "ancient Egyptian calendar to the "Julian year. Their New Year celebrations on "Neyrouz and "Enkutatash were fixed; however, at a point in the "Sothic cycle close to the "Indiction, between the years 1900 and 2100, they fall on September 11 during most years and September 12 in the years before a "leap year.

Historical European new year dates[edit]

During the "Roman Republic and the "Roman Empire years began on the date on which each consul first entered office. This was probably May 1 before 222 BC, March 15 from 222 BC to 154 BC,[10] and January 1 from 153 BC.[11] In 45 BC, when "Julius Caesar's new "Julian calendar took effect, the Senate fixed January 1 as the first day of the year. At that time, this was the date on which those who were to hold civil office assumed their official position, and it was also the traditional annual date for the convening of the Roman Senate. This civil new year remained in effect throughout the Roman Empire, east and west, during its lifetime and well after, wherever the Julian calendar continued in use.

In England, the Angle, Saxon, and Viking invasions of the fifth through tenth centuries plunged the region back into pre-history for a time. While the reintroduction of Christianity brought the Julian calendar with it, its use was primarily in the service of the church to begin with. After "William the Conqueror became king in 1066, he ordered that January 1 be re-established as the civil New Year.["citation needed] Later["when?], however, England and Scotland joined much of Europe to celebrate the New Year on March 25.[12]

In the "Middle Ages in Europe a number of significant feast days in the "ecclesiastical calendar of the Roman Catholic Church came to be used as the "beginning of the Julian year:

In 1582, "Pope Gregory XIII while reforming the Julian calendar established January 1 as the beginning of a New Year of the "Gregorian calendar.

"Southward equinox day (usually September 22) was "New Year's Day" in the "French Republican Calendar, which was in use from 1793 to 1805. This was primidi Vendémiaire, the first day of the first month.

Current readoptions of January 1[edit]

It took quite a long time before January 1 again became the universal or standard start of the civil year. The years of adoption of 1 January as the new year are as follows:

Country Start year[15][16]
"Venice 1522
"Sweden 1529
"Holy Roman Empire (~Germany) 1544
Spain, Portugal, "Poland 1556
"Prussia, "Denmark[17] and "Norway 1559
France ("Edict of Roussillon) 1564
"Southern Netherlands[18] 1576
"Lorraine 1579
"Dutch Republic 1583
"Scotland 1600
"Russia 1700
"Tuscany 1721
"Britain, "Ireland and
"British Empire
except "Scotland
"Japan 1873
China ("ROC and "PRC) 1912
"Greece 1923
"Turkey 1926
"Thailand 1941

March 1 was the first day of the numbered year in the "Republic of Venice until its destruction in 1797, and in "Russia from 988 until 1492 ("Anno Mundi 7000 in the "Byzantine calendar). September 1 was used in "Russia from 1492 (A.M. 7000) until the adoption of the "Christian era in 1700 via a December 1699 decree of Tsar "Peter I.

Time zones[edit]

Because of the division of the globe into "time zones, the new year moves progressively around the globe as the start of the day ushers in the New Year. The first time zone to usher in the New Year, just west of the "International Date Line, is located in the "Line Islands, a part of the nation of "Kiribati, and has a time zone 14 hours ahead of "UTC.[19][20][21] All other time zones are 1 to 25 hours behind, most in the previous day (December 31); on "American Samoa and "Midway, it is still 11 PM on December 30. These are among the last inhabited places to observe New Year. However, uninhabited outlying U.S. territories "Howland Island and "Baker Island are designated as lying within the time zone 12 hours behind UTC, the last places on earth to see the arrival of January 1. These small coral islands are found about midway between Hawaii and Australia, about 1,000 miles west of the Line Islands. This is because the International Date Line is a composite of local time zone arrangements, which winds through the Pacific Ocean, allowing each locale to remain most closely connected in time with the nearest or largest or most convenient political and economic locales with which each associates. By the time Howland Island sees the new year, it is 2 AM on January 2 in the Line Islands of Kiribati.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Anthony Aveni, "Happy New Year! But Why Now?" in The Book of the Year: A Brief History of Our Seasonal Holidays (Oxford: "Oxford University Press, 2003), 11–28.
  2. ^ El Calendario Mexica y la Cronografía, Rafael Tena. INAH-CONACULTA. 2008 p 80-81.
  3. ^ Tek Web Visuals, Cochina. "New Year's Day". World e scan. Retrieved 13 November 2011. 
  4. ^ "The Thelemic Holy Season", 2004
  5. ^ Ben, Tzvi (22 September 2006). "Rosh Hashanah: Prayers, Shofars, Apples, Honey and Pomegranates". Israelnationalnews.com. Retrieved 13 November 2011. 
  6. ^ Rintluanga., Pachuau, (2009). Mizoram : a study in comprehensive geography. New Delhi: Northern Book Centre. p. 9. "ISBN "8172112645. "OCLC 471671707. 
  7. ^ For alternative representations of the Opening of the Year, see "Mesori.
  8. ^ Vygus, Mark (2015), Middle Egyptian Dictionary (PDF) .
  9. ^ Tetley, M. Christine (2014), The Reconstructed Chronology of the Egyptian Kings, Vol. I, p. 42 .
  10. ^ Arthur M. Eckstein (1987). Senate and General: Individual Decision-making and Roman Foreign Relations, 264-194 B.C. "University of California Press. p. 16. 
  11. ^ Roman Dates: Eponymonous Years Archived June 21, 2009, at the "Wayback Machine.
  12. ^ a b c d e Ritter, R. M. (2005), New Hart's Rules:The Handbook of Style for Writers and Editors: The Handbook of Style for Writers and Editors, Oxford University Press, p. 194, "ISBN "9780191650499 
  13. ^ Chambers, Robert (1885), Domestic Annals of Scotland, Edinburgh: "W & R Chambers, p. 157 .["verification needed]
  14. ^ Matheeussen, Constant; Fantazzi, Charles; George, Edward V., eds. (1987). "General Introduction, §IV. The date of the Opuscula varia". Early Writings I. Selected Works of Juan Luis Vives. 1. Leiden: E. J. Brill. p. xvii. "ISBN "9789004077829. Retrieved 17 March 2014. The town of Louvain, belonging to the duchy of Brabant, used the Easter Style, beginning the year at Holy Saturday. 
  15. ^ Mike Spathaky Old Style and New Style Dates and the change to the Gregorian Calendar: A summary for genealogists
  16. ^ "The Change of New Year's Day". Homepages.tesco.net. 1 December 2003. Archived from the original on 11 October 2011. Retrieved 13 November 2011. 
  17. ^ Denmark named 1 January as the New Year in the early 14th century according to R.W. Bauer (Calender for Aarene fra 601 til 2200, 1868/1993 "ISBN "87-7423-083-2) although the number of the year did not begin on 1 January until 1559.
  18. ^ Per decree of 16 June 1575. Hermann Grotefend, "Osteranfang" (Easter beginning), Zeitrechnung de Deutschen Mittelalters und der Neuzeit (Chronology of the German Middle Ages and modern times) (1891–1898)
  19. ^ World Time Zone. "UTC+14". Retrieved 1 Sep 2014. 
  20. ^ Harris, Aimee (April 1999). "Millennium: Date Line Politics". Honolulu Magazine. Retrieved 14 June 2006. 
  21. ^ Greenwich (2008). "Greenwich Meantime, Kiribati". Kiribati Map. Retrieved 27 February 2008. 

External links[edit]

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