Starting point chinese dating system
The Chinese calendar is a lunisolar calendar, incorporating elements of a lunar calendar with those of a solar calendar, indicating both the phase of the Moon and the time of the solar year.
LUNAR CALENDAR The lunar calendar is a dating system based on a year consisting of synodic months (synodic period is the time that it takes for the object to reappear at the same point in the sky, relative to the Sun, as observed from Earth)- i.e., complete cycles of phases, cycles of the Moon.
Such a calendar is called a tropical solar calendar.
LUNISOLAR CALENDAR A lunisolar calendar is a calendar whose date indicates both the phase of the Moon and the time of the solar year, hence a combination of the lunar as well as the solar calendar.
From the earliest records, the beginning of the year occurred at a new moon near the Winter Solstice. The Chinese New Year- also called Spring Festival- is celebrated at the second new moon after the Winter Solstice and can fall anywhere between late January and the middle of February as per Western calendar.
New Year festivities traditionally start on the first day of the month and continue until the fifteenth, when the moon is brightest (full moon in the middle of the month).
The earliest evidence of the Chinese calendar is found on oracle bones of the Shang dynasty (ca.
The name of a lunar month is taken from the solar system.One uses the lunar system and the other uses the solar system.In the lunar system of month, the the first day of a lunar month is the day when a new moon appears in a particular time zone, when the Moon is completely ‘black’ and in conjunction with the Sun, hence is an astronomical new moon and begins at midnight.The determination of a Chinese year is based on astrological calculations; the dates of the new moon (= the first day of a lunar month) as well as the Sun’s longitude.
A Chinese year normally consists of 12 months, one month corresponds to one lunar cycle/ one phase of the Moon.
A lunisolar calendar is a lunar calendar that keeps months on a lunar cycle, but then intercalary months are added to bring the lunar cycles into synchronisation with the solar year.