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37

Edinburgh Castle's tourist attraction, the One O'Clock Gun, originated as an audible version of the Nelson Monument time ball. The Nelson time ball has dropped at 1:00 pm ever since it was installed in 1853. Accordingly, the One O'Clock Gun also fired at 1:00 pm. Anything else would have been potentially confusing. Time balls were important for maritime ...


31

Most likely because it wasn't until the modern era that anyone really needed, or could achieve, much precision with time measurements. Prior to modern timekeeping, people pretty much lived on daily and seasonal schedule. The main thing you'd need to know was how close between sunup and sundown you were (and which side, but that's typically obvious by ...


18

Essentially the extra quarter of a day that the Julian leap year added was slightly longer than the 0.242 of a day left over in the actual solar year. It affected Pope Gregory XIII because the Christian holidays were being celebrated on the wrong days. This was noticed by the Pope's astronomers and prompted the need for change. What's the science behind ...


16

One example would be the Amondawa who are a group of indigenous peoples of Brazil. The Amondawa are a sedentary group that utilize various forms of hunting fishing and agriculture to provide for their community, yet according to researchers the Amondawa lack an "abstract concept of time." The University of Portsmouth and the Federal University of Rondonia ...


16

In general, dating was complicated, and different conventions existed simultaneously in England at that time. For the specific example of William the Conqueror's coronation, we have different sources within the following decades implying that it was in 1066 or 1067, anno Domini. The precision sought in the question did not exist, at least in the same form ...


13

there are 3 years, not two, that have to be coordinated. Stellar, Solar and Lunar. The duration of none of these three can be expressed in whole days. (we have leap years because of this). Every old calendar, including that of Mayans, Egyptians and Sumerians, worked. The only difference is how did they corrected for the difference of the solar, the lunar ...


13

Some astronomical events, viz. eclipses, can be reliably predicted to the day. I think they are the best method to identify a date exactly. This webpage provides some insight on the topic. It is basically a list of recorded solar eclipses, where the first one would be on 22 March 2134 BCE. There is however some uncertainty about whether or not the event ...


12

All through history, people needed fair, repeatable measurement of physical quantities. How much grain am I buying? How much land do you have (so it can be taxed)? How much flour and water do I use for my bread? Since most trade was local, they used whatever system they came up with. So long as the people nearby understood it, and it was based on some ...


11

What time was it in Dawson Creek, BC at 1900-01-01 00:00:00 +0000? The pedantically correct answer, based on the IANA Timezone Database, is that it was 1899-12-31 16:00:00 (-0800) at 1900-01-01 00:00:00 +0000. The IANA time zone entry for America/Dawson_Creek is shown below. # Zone NAME GMTOFF RULES FORMAT UNTIL Zone ...


11

For the most part, church and celestial events. In particular, midsummer and midwinter and the equinoxes were both easy to detect and were important events, at least in the colder climates of Europe. One problem with this approach was that the Julian calendar, which was used pretty much everywhere during the middle ages, by the 1500s had gotten seriously ...


10

Spain changed the time zone in 1940 from GMT to GMT+1, Franco thought that it would be a good idea to have same time than nazi Germany and fascist Italy (his political allies), after Germany occupied France. The United Kingdom modified the time zone too, but return back in 1945. In the 80s, the PSOE (political party at government) institutionalized the ...


10

Why does everyone use seconds/minutes/hours today? These units were adopted in the west in ancient times, by the Greeks, who borrowed it from their middle eastern neighbors, the Babylonians, who had used it before them. It's all because time-keeping, with seconds, minutes, and hours, originates with astronomical observation, and the art and science are ...


9

1927 saw Shanghai change control from local warlords to the Kuomintang Nationalist Government, who then purged the Chinese Communist Party on April 12 and then declared Shanghai to be a municipality in the Republic of China. Presumably the time change to GMT+8 from a more local mean time was a combination of desire for modernity and to show that Shanghai ...


7

Primarily for convenience of trade and communications across national borders. As the countries of Western Europe have become ever more closely linked, it makes life easier if people can agree on what time it is. The initial standardisation of times, in Great Britain at least, came with the railway - Bristol time was 11 minutes different to London, based on ...


6

Leonardo Fibonacci is credited with introducing the Arabic numbers (0123456789) into European use with his book, "Liber Abaci," in 1202. However, clock-face numbers remained Roman Numerals well into the 15th Century, when Arabic numbers began to appear on clocks in Britain. As to the first use of Western Arabic numbers on a clock face. I have found no ...


6

The ancient Hindus did not regularly use "days of the week" (although they are attested). The reason for this was that the Hindu calendar before 1100 AD used mean times (called madhyama) and this can shift days from one month to another. They did have a division into days assigned as one day to each planet as follows: Ravivara Somavara Mangalavara ...


6

I'm actually deeply suspicious about the data used used on TimeAndDate for historical times, and I suspect things were a lot more messy on the ground in China in late 19th to mid-20th century, even with growth of telegraph etc. I did, however, poke around some postings in Chinese about Jon Skeet's Stack Overflow posting. One of the commenters here, wubotao, ...


5

Short and quick answer: definitely the Romans were NOT the first. Calendar of ancient Egyptians was solar, and Sumerian one - lunisolar, both of them fit your description, although the issue which of them is older is open, and in fact is a discussion of interpreting archeological materials. Hence it would be also impossible to provide any definitive, precise ...


5

Most common people had no great need to know the time to any meaningful precision. Those who needed the time either relied on the sun, or relied on the community's effort at time keeping (more on this later). Generally speaking, especially for people in remote regions, the sky was their clock. As you noted in your answer, they could glance up at the sky and ...


4

Interestingly, when the time zones were established at the International Meridian Conference in 1884, the original idea was to have a single coordinated solar day. This meant that eventually, the hope was to have a single coordinated time throughout the world. The idea of dividing the world into time zones was merely supposed to be a step to getting to ...


4

None of the Hindu mythological books or puranas mention the names of the week , today what we use as VAAR ( Ravi , Som , Mangal, Budh . Brihaspati, Shukra, and Shani ) are the translated version of the western system , it was only the THITHI as per the Lunar calendar followed all over. the names of the week is recent and has no origin in Indian Mythology ( ...


4

One look at that chart you link to makes clear that the author is deficient in understanding Norse mythology: Woden (or Odin) is the Norse King of the Gods and thus equivalent to Jupiter/Zeus and not to Mercury/Hermes; Both Thor and Tyr/Tiw were Gods of War (Who guessed that the Norse were warlike), so identifying either one of them as equivalent to ...


4

After some reading about the early Roman Calendar, it is relevant to note that originally the calendar had only ten months and began on March, with an uncounted “winter” period after December. The number of days on each month were more or less flexible, and they usually tried to align the 15th of March, the mid of the month, with Ides, a full moon. At the ...


4

Possibly they wanted to match it to Brumalia. The Roman winter solstice festival. wikipedia: "The Brumalia was also celebrated during the space of thirty days, commencing on 24 November and ending with the "Waxing of the Light", December 25" citation Much the same can be said about Saturnalia, they're very similar. The "Birthday of the Unconquered Sun" is ...


3

In their original zeal for things decimal, when the French originally adopted the metric system after the Revolution, they also adopted a new system of time keeping called French Revolutionary Time to go along with the French Republican calendar. French Revolutionary time divided the period of the day from midnight to midnight into 10 hours, each hour being ...


2

Maybe a word about the Greeks? Around 330BCE, Callipus, a student of Eudoxus at Plato's Academy and of Aristotle at his Lyceum, determined the length of the tropical year (that is to say the interval of time between two vernal equinoxes or two summer solstices) to be 365+1/4 days. He also showed that the four seasons (defined as the interval of time ...


2

According to Feeny, "Caesar's Calendar", p.196 (preview here), the concept of aligning with the celestial objects was not even present to Roman minds in Cicero's time. It would be interesting to know precisely where in Cicero and Ovid there are references to alignment.


2

According to this paper, in 2951 BC there was a massive volcanic eruption. I do not know whether even more ancient eruptions can be calculated.


2

You question is all over the place, it's difficult to understand what you are asking. Based on what you've stated in your question and in comments I am interpreting your question as being “when were the European equivalent of Arabic numbers used with a common era calendar system to write dates similar to how they are written now?” At the same time you ...


2

While this question is way too broad, we have a really good example in terms of the international working class movement. EP Thompson's "Time, work-discipline and industrial capitalism" Past and Present, discusses the change from fields and craft times, including Saint Monday (the unofficial extension of the Sunday weekend forced by workers), into ...



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