What if the Roman Pontifex Maximus reformed their calendar?

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What if the Roman Pontifex Maximus reformed their calendar?

Christoph Päper-2
Dear calendarists

TL;DR:
Does anyone know which legal foundations the Gregorian reforms have been enacted upon and how they would apply today?

----8<--------8<----

Anyone can specify a calendar, which incidentally most subscribers to this mailing list have already done at least once, but only few organizations have the need to adopt one unilaterally and even fewer the power to influence others in their decisions. One of them is – or at least was – the Roman Catholic Church, another was the Roman Empire(s).

As far as I understand it, the Roman Republic until about 2100 years ago used a lunar calendar without static predefined (leap) rules, so there had to be some recognized authority to issue regular corrections. This was the Pontifex Maximus (lit. “biggest bridge-builder”), a title subsequently passed to the Roman Emperor and then the Pope or Bishop of Rome.

Julius Caesar used this power to adopt some changes from the Egyptian solar calendar, including a simple arithmetic leap rule. His successor just made a minor name change, which have happened as well in subsequent national implementations. The count of years and the date of their turns have been changed later on locally, nationally and finally almost globally. In 1582, Pope Gregory XIII adopted changes to the leap rule, the Easter Calculus and possibly some minor details.

I’m not sure whether the Christian churches have ever formally specified the association of days to weeks or weeks to months and years – some national legislatives and ISO certainly have.
By the way, as far as I know, there are some European traditions to determine dates of (Christian) holidays by assigning weeks (Sun–Sat probably) to months based on the majority of their days, whereas nowadays n-th/n-th-last weekday or n-th weekday after/before month-day date are being used for that.

Based on this, we could specify several calendars:

 - Roman Calendar [RC]
 - Roman Lunar Calendar [RLC] /
   (Roman) Republican Calendar [RRC]
 - (Roman) Catholic Calendar [RCC] /
   (Western) Christian Calendar [WCC]
 - Julian Calendar [JC] /
   (Roman) Imperial Calendar [RIC] /
   (Eastern) Christian Calendar [ECC] /
   Orthodox (Christian) Calendar [OCC]
 - Gregorian Calendar [GC]
 - International Calendar [IC] /
   Standard Calendar [SC] /
   International Standard Calendar [ISC]

The currently most-used public calendar is usually referred to as GC, but historic dates are often specified in the then-local calendar, so for about 1600 (to over 1900) years before the GC was introduced, JC is used in Europe. This common tradition is the RCC/WCC.
Dates before the AD epoch are rarely specified with day-precision, except in astronomy, so it’s quite pointless to argue whether one should use GC, JC or RRC/RLC for them. Together they can be said to form the RC tradition, which has later become the IC or global SC and been formalized as the ISC. In other words, the RC is still in use, although the RLC/RRC (completely) and the JC (almost) are not anymore.

Since the talks for a unified and maybe fixed date of Easter are still (or rather again) ongoing among the Christian churches, a Common Christian Calendar [CCC] is a realistic possibility to happen within the coming decades. It would be most welcome, in my opinion, if this was directly compatible with the ISC (which may also be revised slightly in the meantime).

Imagine, however, the church leaders realized they would need to make more extensive changes to the calendar (e.g. re month lengths) to harmonize their holidays and feasts, thereby maybe even getting at least some support from Jewish and Islamic/Muslim groups. They certainly could decide to do so internally, but would that necessarily have any effect on civil calendars?

ISO 8601 relies on the (proleptic) Gregorian Calendar instead of defining an absolute, independent calendar system. (It’s foremost a notation standard for data interchange after all.) As far as I can tell, the standard is not prepared in any way to deal with changes to that reference, nor is anyone else.
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Re: What if the Roman Pontifex Maximus reformed their calendar?

Walter J Ziobro

Dear Christoph

The Calendar Act of 1851 by the British Parliament reformed the calendar throughout the British Empire This included the USA which was a British colony then
While this act is considered the legal adoption of the Gregorian Calendar in the British Empire, the act doesn't mention the Gregorian Calendar by name
In fact there are a couple of subtle differences between the Gregorian Calendar and the calendar described in the act For one, February 29 is the legal leap day whereas Ppope Gregory considered the.bisextile day February 24 counted twice to be leap day

Also the tables described in the act to determine Easter don't use Gregorian epacts but always give the same date for Easter

Walter Ziobro

Sent from AOL Mobile Mail




On Wednesday, December 28, 2016 Christoph Päper <[hidden email]> wrote:

Dear calendarists

TL;DR:
Does anyone know which legal foundations the Gregorian reforms have been enacted upon and how they would apply today?

----8<--------8<----

Anyone can specify a calendar, which incidentally most subscribers to this mailing list have already done at least once, but only few organizations have the need to adopt one unilaterally and even fewer the power to influence others in their decisions. One of them is – or at least was – the Roman Catholic Church, another was the Roman Empire(s).

As far as I understand it, the Roman Republic until about 2100 years ago used a lunar calendar without static predefined (leap) rules, so there had to be some recognized authority to issue regular corrections. This was the Pontifex Maximus (lit. “biggest bridge-builder”), a title subsequently passed to the Roman Emperor and then the Pope or Bishop of Rome.

Julius Caesar used this power to adopt some changes from the Egyptian solar calendar, including a simple arithmetic leap rule. His successor just made a minor name change, which have happened as well in subsequent national implementations. The count of years and the date of their turns have been changed later on locally, nationally and finally almost globally. In 1582, Pope Gregory XIII adopted changes to the leap rule, the Easter Calculus and possibly some minor details.

I’m not sure whether the Christian churches have ever formally specified the association of days to weeks or weeks to months and years – some national legislatives and ISO certainly have.
By the way, as far as I know, there are some European traditions to determine dates of (Christian) holidays by assigning weeks (Sun–Sat probably) to months based on the majority of their days, whereas nowadays n-th/n-th-last weekday or n-th weekday after/before month-day date are being used for that.

Based on this, we could specify several calendars:

- Roman Calendar [RC]
- Roman Lunar Calendar [RLC] /
(Roman) Republican Calendar [RRC]
- (Roman) Catholic Calendar [RCC] /
(Western) Christian Calendar [WCC]
- Julian Calendar [JC] /
(Roman) Imperial Calendar [RIC] /
(Eastern) Christian Calendar [ECC] /
Orthodox (Christian) Calendar [OCC]
- Gregorian Calendar [GC]
- International Calendar [IC] /
Standard Calendar [SC] /
International Standard Calendar [ISC]

The currently most-used public calendar is usually referred to as GC, but historic dates are often specified in the then-local calendar, so for about 1600 (to over 1900) years before the GC was introduced, JC is used in Europe. This common tradition is the RCC/WCC.
Dates before the AD epoch are rarely specified with day-precision, except in astronomy, so it’s quite pointless to argue whether one should use GC, JC or RRC/RLC for them. Together they can be said to form the RC tradition, which has later become the IC or global SC and been formalized as the ISC. In other words, the RC is still in use, although the RLC/RRC (completely) and the JC (almost) are not anymore.

Since the talks for a unified and maybe fixed date of Easter are still (or rather again) ongoing among the Christian churches, a Common Christian Calendar [CCC] is a realistic possibility to happen within the coming decades. It would be most welcome, in my opinion, if this was directly compatible with the ISC (which may also be revised slightly in the meantime).

Imagine, however, the church leaders realized they would need to make more extensive changes to the calendar (e.g. re month lengths) to harmonize their holidays and feasts, thereby maybe even getting at least some support from Jewish and Islamic/Muslim groups. They certainly could decide to do so internally, but would that necessarily have any effect on civil calendars?

ISO 8601 relies on the (proleptic) Gregorian Calendar instead of defining an absolute, independent calendar system. (It’s foremost a notation standard for data interchange after all.) As far as I can tell, the standard is not prepared in any way to deal with changes to that reference, nor is anyone else.
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Re: What if the Roman Pontifex Maximus reformed their calendar?

Walter J Ziobro

Dear Christoph and Calendar List

Oops

That should have been the Calendar Act of 1751, not 1851, whi ch I was describing

Walter Ziobro

Sent from AOL Mobile Mail




On Thursday, December 29, 2016 Walter J Ziobro <[hidden email]> wrote:

Dear Christoph

The Calendar Act of 1851 by the British Parliament reformed the calendar throughout the British Empire This included the USA which was a British colony then
While this act is considered the legal adoption of the Gregorian Calendar in the British Empire, the act doesn't mention the Gregorian Calendar by name
In fact there are a couple of subtle differences between the Gregorian Calendar and the calendar described in the act For one, February 29 is the legal leap day whereas Ppope Gregory considered the.bisextile day February 24 counted twice to be leap day

Also the tables described in the act to determine Easter don't use Gregorian epacts but always give the same date for Easter

Walter Ziobro

Sent from AOL Mobile Mail


On Wednesday, December 28, 2016 Christoph Päper <christoph.paeper@...> wrote:
Dear calendarists

TL;DR:
Does anyone know which legal foundations the Gregorian reforms have been enacted upon and how they would apply today?

----8<--------8<----

Anyone can specify a calendar, which incidentally most subscribers to this mailing list have already done at least once, but only few organizations have the need to adopt one unilaterally and even fewer the power to influence others in their decisions. One of them is – or at least was – the Roman Catholic Church, another was the Roman Empire(s).

As far as I understand it, the Roman Republic until about 2100 years ago used a lunar calendar without static predefined (leap) rules, so there had to be some recognized authority to issue regular corrections. This was the Pontifex Maximus (lit. “biggest bridge-builder”), a title subsequently passed to the Roman Emperor and then the Pope or Bishop of Rome.

Julius Caesar used this power to adopt some changes from the Egyptian solar calendar, including a simple arithmetic leap rule. His successor just made a minor name change, which have happened as well in subsequent national implementations. The count of years and the date of their turns have been changed later on locally, nationally and finally almost globally. In 1582, Pope Gregory XIII adopted changes to the leap rule, the Easter Calculus and possibly some minor details.

I’m not sure whether the Christian churches have ever formally specified the association of days to weeks or weeks to months and years – some national legislatives and ISO certainly have.
By the way, as far as I know, there are some European traditions to determine dates of (Christian) holidays by assigning weeks (Sun–Sat probably) to months based on the majority of their days, whereas nowadays n-th/n-th-last weekday or n-th weekday after/before month-day date are being used for that.

Based on this, we could specify several calendars:

- Roman Calendar [RC]
- Roman Lunar Calendar [RLC] /
(Roman) Republican Calendar [RRC]
- (Roman) Catholic Calendar [RCC] /
(Western) Christian Calendar [WCC]
- Julian Calendar [JC] /
(Roman) Imperial Calendar [RIC] /
(Eastern) Christian Calendar [ECC] /
Orthodox (Christian) Calendar [OCC]
- Gregorian Calendar [GC]
- International Calendar [IC] /
Standard Calendar [SC] /
International Standard Calendar [ISC]

The currently most-used public calendar is usually referred to as GC, but historic dates are often specified in the then-local calendar, so for about 1600 (to over 1900) years before the GC was introduced, JC is used in Europe. This common tradition is the RCC/WCC.
Dates before the AD epoch are rarely specified with day-precision, except in astronomy, so it’s quite pointless to argue whether one should use GC, JC or RRC/RLC for them. Together they can be said to form the RC tradition, which has later become the IC or global SC and been formalized as the ISC. In other words, the RC is still in use, although the RLC/RRC (completely) and the JC (almost) are not anymore.

Since the talks for a unified and maybe fixed date of Easter are still (or rather again) ongoing among the Christian churches, a Common Christian Calendar [CCC] is a realistic possibility to happen within the coming decades. It would be most welcome, in my opinion, if this was directly compatible with the ISC (which may also be revised slightly in the meantime).

Imagine, however, the church leaders realized they would need to make more extensive changes to the calendar (e.g. re month lengths) to harmonize their holidays and feasts, thereby maybe even getting at least some support from Jewish and Islamic/Muslim groups. They certainly could decide to do so internally, but would that necessarily have any effect on civil calendars?

ISO 8601 relies on the (proleptic) Gregorian Calendar instead of defining an absolute, independent calendar system. (It’s foremost a notation standard for data interchange after all.) As far as I can tell, the standard is not prepared in any way to deal with changes to that reference, nor is anyone else.
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Re: What if the Roman Pontifex Maximus reformed their calendar?

Mockingbird
In reply to this post by Christoph Päper-2
Christoph Päper-2 wrote
As far as I understand it, the Roman Republic until about 2100 years ago used a lunar calendar without static predefined (leap) rules, so there had to be some recognized authority to issue regular corrections. This was the Pontifex Maximus (lit. “biggest bridge-builder”), a title subsequently passed to the Roman Emperor and then the Pope or Bishop of Rome.

Julius Caesar used this power to adopt some changes from the Egyptian solar calendar, including a simple arithmetic leap rule. His successor just made a minor name change, which have happened as well in subsequent national implementations. The count of years and the date of their turns have been changed later on locally, nationally and finally almost globally. In 1582, Pope Gregory XIII adopted changes to the leap rule, the Easter Calculus and possibly some minor details.
Fascinating subject!

The historical record for the Roman Republian calendar begins earlier than 101 BC, and by the time this calendar began to be recorded in history, it was no longer lunar.  However, some of the republican calendar's features make more sense if one assumes that the pre-historic Republican calendar was originally lunar.  The pre-historic calendar's details remain unknown, though ancient and modern authors have enjoyed speculating about it.  One possibility is that the pre-historic republican calendar's lunar months had their Calends corresponding to the new waxing crescent moon and their Ides corresponding approximately to the full moon.  The year began at the countdown to the Calends of March and ended on the Ides of December.  There followed a two or three-month period that was not considered part of the year, but was simply called "Winter" if it was called anything at all.  The year would begin again when the priests announced the countdown to the Calends of the following March.

It is not certain how much authority the Pontifex Maximus had on his own and how much he was required to consult with the other Pontiffs.  It is also not sure that it was the Pontifical power that Caesar used to reform the calendar.  It may be that his intercalation of the final year of the republican calendar was on his authority as Pontifex Maximus, while the institution of the new calendar was on his authority as Dictator.

The intercalations of the Julian calendar were initially botched, occurring every 3 years instead of every 4 years.  Augustus suppressed some intercalations until the calendar got back on track.  The Julian calendar is identical to today's starting in 5 A.D. or thereabouts.