The Byzantine calendar was the
calendarofficially used by the Byzantine Empire(Eastern Roman Empire) [The term "Byzantine" was invented by the German historian Hieronymus Wolfin 1557but was popularized by French scholars during the 18th century to refer to the Eastern Roman Empire. The citizens of the empire considered themselves "Romans" and their emperor was the "Roman Emperor".] from 988by Basil IIuntil it was conquered in 1453. It was identical to the Julian calendarexcept that the names of the months were transcribed from Latininto Greek, the first day of the year was 1 September, and its year one was 5509–08 BC, the supposed date of creation.
The beginning of the year of the Byzantine
indictionchanged to 1 Septemberabout 462and it was officially adopted as one way to identify a Byzantine year in 537. However, Byzantine historians like Maximus the Confessor, Theophanes the Confessorand George Syncelluscontinued to begin their year on 25 Marchand to number their years from that date in 5493 BC until the tenth century. Ever since the Roman Empire conquered the region surrounding the eastern Mediterranian Sea, its Latin months had been transcribed into Greek.
leap dayof the Byzantine calendar was obtained in an identical manner to the bissextile dayof the original Roman version of the Julian calendar, by doubling the sixth day before the calendsof March, i.e., by doubling 24 February(numbering the days of a month from its beginning and hence the leap day of 29 Februarywas an invention of the late Middle Ages).
Important dates in the Byzantine Era
* 1 BE (Byzantine Era) - Creation of the world.
* 4755 BE (
753 BC) - Romewas founded.
* 4841 BE (
667 BC) - City of Byzantiumwas founded.
* 5478 BE (
30 BC) - Establishment of the Roman Empireat the Battle of Actiumunder Octavian/ Augustus.
* c. 5502 BE (
6 BC) - Jesusof Nazarethwas born.
* c. 5541 BE (AD
33) - Jesus Christ's crucifixionand resurrection.
* 5838 BE (AD
330) - Constantinoplebecomes the new capital of the Roman Empire.
* 5888 BE (AD
380) - Christianitybecame the official religion of the Roman Empire by decree of Theodosius I.
* 5903 BE (AD
395) - Death of Theodosius Idivides the Roman Empire into East and West.
* 6045 BE (AD
537) - Justinian Idecrees that the indiction must be included when designating a Byzantine year.
* 6118 BE (AD
610) - Eastern Roman Empire changed its official language from Latinto Greek.
* 6496 BE (AD
988) - First official use of the Byzantine Era by Basil II.
* 6562 BE (AD
1054) - Great Schism occurs between the Eastern Orthodox Churchand the Roman Catholic Church.
* 6712 BE (AD
1204) - Sack of Constantinople by soldiers of the Fourth Crusade. Latin Empireof Constantinople was established.
* 6769 BE (AD
1261) - Byzantine Empire is re-established. Double-headed black eagle on a field of gold is adopted as the official flagof the Byzantine Empire by Emperor Michael VIIIPaleologue. [ [http://www.crwflags.com/fotw/flags/gr_byz.html Byzantine symbols] ] .
* 6961 BE (AD
1453) - Fall of Constantinople--The final collapse of the Byzantine Empire.
* 7427 BE-7430 BE (AD
1919-AD 1922) Greek politician Eleftherios Venizelosattempts to implement the Megali Idea(recapture of Constantinople from Turkey) in the Greco-Turkish War (1919-1922), but in the course of the war Venizelos loses the election of 1920 and goes into exile and Greeceis defeated by Turkey.
Cultural influence of the Byzantine calendar
The civilization of Rome (in its most inclusive sense including both
Ancient Romeand New Rome(Constantinople)) lasted a total of 2,206 years.
After the collapse of the Byzantine Empire in
1453, the Byzantine calendar continued to be used by Russia(translated into Slavonic) until 1700. It is still used by a number of Eastern Orthodox Churches. The year AD 2000was 7508-09 BE.
Eastern Orthodox liturgical calendar
* [http://www.geocities.com/TimesSquare/Labyrinth/2398/bginfo/trade/time.html Byzantine ways of reckoning time]
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