We owe our present calendar to the dictator Julius Caesar and Pope Gregory XIII. The ancient Roman calendar was based on the moon phases, but over time the 10-month, 304-day calendar went out of sync with seasons. Two months were then added to increase the length of the year to 354/355 days. Caesar introduced a more standardized calendar in 45 BC based on Earth’s revolution around the sun (tropical year), which is approximately 365 days, 5 hours, 48 minutes and 45 seconds. As there were too many leap days in the Julian calendar, celebrations like Easter went out of sync with fixed dates for astronomical events like equinoxes and solstices—thus the introduction of the Gregorian calendar, which we now use. Along the way the Philippines lost a day in adjusting to the international dateline in 1844.
Page Design: Elizalde Pusong
Illustration: Elizalde Pusong and Au Maun
Editor: Manolo Quezon
Research: Ana Roa