Until what time was the Ancient Roman calendar era, based on the founding of Rome, used? Or what was the latest historical event that was mentioned in chronicles with an Ab Urbe Condita year?

  • I want to say Pope Gregory created the leap year (an extra day every four years in February) in order to account for the problem of "losing time" in the Julian (Julius Caesar created) Calendar. Commented Oct 1, 2016 at 17:25
  • Actually had to look that one up as the Julian Calendar did have a leap year...but this included one every year for each Century which made the "timing" off for Christian celebrations under Pope Gregory...so he subtracted one leap day for every one hundred years. Interesting to look up the Islamic (lunar) Calendar and the Mayan (mathematical) one in contrast. Commented Oct 1, 2016 at 21:12
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    The question is not about the supercession of the Julian calendar for the Gregorian calendar, but about the supercession of the AUC for the AC/DC system, which happened much before. About a thousand years before, indeed. Commented Oct 1, 2016 at 23:54
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    @user14394: ....three leap days for every 400 years....
    – fdb
    Commented Oct 2, 2016 at 9:18

1 Answer 1


I was keen on finding a similar answer (or, at least, question) to the Eastern Roman world which led me to read a bit on the AUC timekeeping, and from what Wiki says, the AUC was never rightly an official way of measuring time, but rather a method to refer to special years and such. This changed when the Principes found it a convenient way to highlight the 800th birthday, and such events, and I guess it can have become more common in usage.

The official Republican calendar was based on the two serving consuls, i.e., in the Year of Consul 1 and Consul 2, this happened. Hence, this should rightly be considered the 'ancient Roman calendar era' with the AUC system a secondary measure which arose later in the Imperial time.

A trivial answer for the second bit would highlight that Livius' chronicle goes up to 9 BC, and hence the last year he definitively refers to as an AUC is 762. I am unaware of other chroniclers preferring this system to other calendars, but I am sure someone else can posit a better guess to a final year that was mentioned in any chronicle as an AUC.

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