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10-Oct-2019 01:00

When first implemented, the "Julian Calendar" also moved the beginning of the year from March 1 to January 1.However, following the fall of the Roman Empire in the fifth century, the new year was gradually realigned to coincide with Christian festivals until by the seventh century, Christmas Day marked the beginning of the new year in many countries.The changes implemented that year have created challenges for historians and genealogists working with early colonial records, since it is sometimes hard to determine whether information was entered according to the then-current English calendar or the "New Style" calendar we use today.Throughout history there have been numerous attempts to convey time in relation to the sun and moon.Prior to 1752 in Great Britain and it's colonies, the New Year started on March 25.With the implementation of the Gregorian calendar, the New Year started on January 1.

The beginning of the legal new year was moved from March 25 to January 1.

In fact, in Latin, September means seventh month, October means eighth month, November means ninth month, and December means tenth month.

Use of numbers, rather than names, of months was especially prevalent in Quaker records.

By the ninth century, parts of southern Europe began observing first day of the new year on March 25 to coincide with Annunciation Day (the church holiday nine months prior to Christmas celebrating the Angel Gabriel's revelation to the Virgin Mary that she was to be the mother of the Messiah). However, England did not adopt this change in the beginning of the new year until late in the twelfth century.

Because the year began in March, records referring to the "first month" pertain to March; to the second month pertain to April, etc., so that "the 19th of the 12th month" would be February 19.

By that time, the discrepancy between a solar year and the Julian Calendar had grown by an additional day, so that the calendar used in England and its colonies was 11 days out-of-sync with the Gregorian Calendar in use in most other parts of Europe.