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C.) was chosen as the beginning of a new era. The Buddhist calendar is lunisolar and is still used in Thailand, Burma, Sri Lanka, Cambodia and Laos, where we are therefore already in the year 2561.
In India the situation is even more complicated, with a triple dating, because in the Indian national calendar the years are counted on the basis of the Saka Hindu era, which began in 78 AD, while in the Vikrama calendar, the starting year is 56 BC.
The Jews, on the other hand, have counted the years since ancient times even starting from the creation of the world, which they place in 3760 BC. This calculation is based on the over a hundred years of life of the patriarchs, of whom the Bible tells. In Israel, therefore, it is already the year 5778! The year is made up of 12 or 13 months, in turn made up of 29 or 30 days. The Hebrew one is a ceremonial calendar, used to establish holidays, and administrative documents, such as Israeli identity cards, show the dates of both calendars.
For Muslims, year zero corresponds to 622 AD, the year of Hegira, when Muhammad fled from Mecca to Medina. But since the calendar is lunar, it is now not the year 1396 (2018 minus 622), but 1439. In fact, each year lasts only 354 days, or 355 every three years.
In Iran and Afghanistan it is the year 1396 according to the Persian solar calendar, which establishes which leap years are not by means of a numerical rule, but on the basis of a precise astronomical observation of the spring equinox.
For the Chinese it is instead the year 4713. This is because in 213 BC. Emperor Ch’in Shih burned all the written documents of the country. Eight years later, however, with the Han dynasty, an attempt was made to reconstruct the history of the empire, dating back to 2637 BC, a date assumed as year zero.
China and most eastern countries have a dating system that incorporates elements of both solar and lunar calendars. Today the People’s Republic of China and most of East Asia officially adopt the Gregorian calendar, but its “ancestor”, the Julian calendar, was already known and used in China since the time of Marco Polo. However, the ancient Chinese calendar continues to be observed above all for holidays and is similar in many respects to the Jewish lunisolar calendar: it also provides, in fact, years of 12 months and long 353, 354 or 355 days, and years consisting of 13 months and long 383, 384 or 385 days. Each year is also associated with an animal of the Chinese zodiac: mouse, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, goat, monkey, rooster, dog and pig. 2018 begins in the year of the Dog.
So this is the month of January 2018 A.D. for the whole world, but it is right to take into consideration that Time is “relative” and that, on the ideal time line of History, various important events marked the beginning of different dates linked to religions, civilizations and cultures other than the western one.
While in Italian (as in Latin) BC means “before Christ”, for the Anglo-Saxons it stands for “after Christ” that is “after Christ” and the initials b.C. it means “before Christ”, that is “before Christ”.