THE EGYPTIAN CALENDAR

by eirenehogan

I have noticed I have a couple of followers on this blog.  Wow, thanks for that.  I think therefore I should post some more.

I’ve been reading a lot on calendars over the Yule period, and it is very complicated.  I will attempt to post more on it as time goes on.  But anyway, for now is some more info on the Egyptian calendar.

 

Bede wrote a fascinating book on how the year and the months were calculated according the movement of the sun, the moon and the planets.  It is a collection of the knowledge of the ancients that he could get a hold of.  It is called The Reckoning of Time (or the Latin thereof).  In it he examines ancient calendars, the Roman calendar and the Anglo-Saxon calendar.  You can access it from Google Books, and I have linked the above title to that.

 

Below I have transcribed the Egyptian calendar as he recorded it.  The dates of the beginning are according to the Roman calendar, and therefore ours – well, taking into account how often that calendar was out.  The months did not begin exactly on those days but give or take a day or so according to how accurately both the Egyptian and the Roman calendar reflected the actual cycle of the sun at the time.

 

Interesting to note that they had leap years.  I don’t know what era this calendar belongs too.  To say something is ‘Ancient Egyptian’ allows for about 3000 years of time.  As Bede has access to the info I’d assume it comes from Greek/Roman writers who had access to such places as the Alexandrian Library. Now as the Roman calendar dates are given, I am assuming this calendar was in force during Roman times.  Yeah, more research needed here.

 

 

Months

 

Name of month

Date of Roman Calendar when month begins

Thoth 29 August
Phaophi 28 Sept
Hathyr 29 Oct
Choiac 27 Nov
Tybi 27 Dec
Mecheir 26 Jan
Phamenoth 25 Feb
Pharmouhti 27 Mar
Pachons 26 April
Payni 26 May
Epieph 25 June
Mesore 25 July
5 intercalated days / 6 every four years 24 Aug

 

From:

The Reckoning of Time, By Saint Bede (the Venerable).

Trans. Faith Wallis, 1999,

Liverpool University Press,

viewed from GOOGLE Books (viewed 3.1.14)

p. 45.

 

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2 Comments to “THE EGYPTIAN CALENDAR”

  1. This is really interesting, thank you for sharing. My husband has been looking into calenders a lot lately too. He’s been trying to pinpoint where yule should really be. Apparently it’s a two month stretch in one culture, one month (equivalent to our November) in another, ect.

    • Thanks for that. Nice to hear others are interested in calendars too. LOL, I’m not alone. 🙂

      I began looking into this because of an interest in the Anglo-Saxon calendar. Bede does write about that, as I’m sure your husband knows. It is fascinating that the English and Welsh days of the week are the only ones in western Europe who still use the name of Saturn in Saturday. That indicates to me that Roman Britain took on the days of the week, and because it was still pagan when the Anglo Saxons came, they took on the same 7 day week, changed some of the days to their gods (altho you see those names around the low countries where they came from too, so maybe they simply kept that 7 day week they had got from the Romans) – anyway, as it took some time for Britain to convert to Christianity, then the names of the week stuck, and so they never changed any of them to Christian names – compare the French names of the week.

      I’ve only done a bit on the Anglo Saxon bit, I’ve got sidetracked by Romans and Babylonians and Egyptians. Once I do more I will write some up. I’d be interested to hear what your husband knows on this. From what I’ve read, Yule was the winter time, which tended to range over much of December, and was the time of Woden and also of his wife Friga. I’d imagine the wilds of an ancient northern winter would bring images of Woden on his wild hunt. Friga, on the other hand, was the goddess of the hearth and represented the warmth of the home during the cold winter.

      I love the fact that Yule has remained a name for the Xmas period.

      Bye

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The Postgrad Chronicles

Medieval History from Alfred the Great to The Battle of Castillon