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What Is The Importance of Calendars?
Calendars are one of the basic touchstones that need to be addressed when the organization of social life and the compilation of history as an objective scientific data is desired. The use, organization, and understanding of calendars mediate a better understanding of society and the humanities that concern society. It is impossible to consider the science of history, which is significantly influenced by calendars, apart from the calendar and the time it measures. Our society, like all ancient societies, used a calendar in order to understand itself and its past and to explain it to future generations.
With the construction of calendars in the memories of ancient communities, the calendars of interrelated societies began to fuse and exchange names with each other. Although the oppressive governments of monotheistic religions wanted to eradicate all ancient traditions, the dismantling of historical values that once entered into human memory is as great an event as bringing people to the moon. And this incident is something that can be encountered very rarely in history. It really happened like that.
Neither Christian calendars could erase traces of the Pagan ancient calendars, nor did the Islamic calendars erase the calendars of the period of ignorance. These traces have survived to this day. The science of calendar, advancing in interaction with each other, is now punctuated as universal but multicultural on the basis of the Roman-Gregorian calendar. With a few minor exceptions, this universal heritage is shared by all societies.
Again, all societies have made additions to this calendar in their own self. Our society has also changed, transformed and developed its calendars, both through its own interaction and through the regulatory and repressive practices of the state. Honoring, commemorating or wanting to move into the future is always one of the primary motives in shaping, naming and evolving calendars.
If it is considered systematically, it has always been a striking issue when the calendar should start. But as a remarkable common point, almost all societies, independent of each other, thought that the new year would be welcomed in the spring months when nature came out of a deep sleep and rejuvenated. Of course, since the oldest representative of this tradition is sought, many religious and cultural legends can be pointed out. We can point out the spring festivals on this issue. On the basis of these, Sumerian and Babylonian folk poems and ancient pagan beliefs are reached. In the old myths, the arrival of spring naturally points to the unification of the day and night, and the lovers who cannot be rhetorically reunited. The theme of reunion with Inanna and Dumuziden until the meeting of Hıdır and Ilyas always draws attention. The remembrance of the feelings of love, hope and affection that revived with spring, the dead soil sprinkled on it due to the winter and the revival of the old excitement and pleasures abandoned in a corner have attracted attention as well as the memories of the ancient society as well as the individuals. For this reason, the beginning of the calendars is marked to the spring months as a time scale in which the social memory is organized in general.
Calendars Throughout The History
The calendar used today and the calendars used centuries ago are similar to each other yet there are some differences. The most widely used calendar today is the Gregorian calendar based on the Earth’s rotation around the Sun. In previous years, the Hijri calendar, which was developed based on the phases that the Moon passes through depending on its rotation around the Earth, was used. However, the Lunar and Solar calendars are not the only types of calendars in existence; Apart from these, there are many examples of calendars: Julian calendar, Gezer calendar, Xiuhpohualli calendar, Berber calendar, Soviet calendar, Swedish calendar, Jalali calendar, Earthly branches… People have developed different calendars due to social needs.
It is possible to trace the history of calendar development back to Ancient Egyptian civilization. In these oldest Egyptian calendars, the year is divided into 3 seasons, and the calendar is determined by the position of the star Sirius in the sky. These 3 seasons correspond to the time of sowing and harvesting agricultural products: akhet (flood, shivering), peret (growing) and shemu (harvest).
The first Babylonian calendars developed in later periods were based on the 29.5-day period between two full moons. Within this system, a lunar calendar of 354 days emerged — approximately 1 day shorter than the solar year.The foundation of modern calendars was laid in the 8th century. These calendars were put into use by Julius Caesar in 46 BC. This calendar was named the Julian Calendar, and takes its final form in 8 AD by the Emperor Agustus. After giving this brief information, there are a few more information you should keep in mind before reading the separate meanings of the 12 months in a year: The Roman calendar is slightly different from today’s calendar.
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