It’s Leap Day!!!

Photo by Spencer Davis on Unsplash

Why is there an extra day in February this year?

You can thank the Roman emperor, Julius Caesar.

You see, Rome followed a 355-day calendar, not 365 days like we do currently. They wanted to keep festivals in the same season every year. To do that, the Romans began to add another month to their calendar every other year.

I think that would be confusing.

So did a lot of people way back then. In 45 B.C., Caesar created the 365-day calendar and decided to add one day every four years. (This schedule was actually created by his astronomer, Sosigenes).

It was Pope Gregory XIII, in 1582, who decided to add the day to any year divisible by four (except in years divisible by 100).

For groups that don’t follow the Gregorian calendar, the dates still need to be adjusted. A month is added to the Hebrew calendar every nineteen years and the Baha’i calendar has a leap day added as necessary to ensure the Vernal Equinox is the first day of their new year.

Whatever the reason, enjoy your extra day in 2020! Sonja

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