New Year

Countries following the Julian calendar for holidays (such as places in Eastern Europe) celebrated Christmas over the 6th-7th of January.

A smaller New Year celebration is observed by some a week later, from the 13th-14th of the month.

Here is a New Year stamp of Ukraine from 2003.

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new_year_stamp_of_ukraine_2003

On this day: Great Britain adopts the Gregorian calendar

On the 2nd of September, 1752, Great Britain adopted the Gregorian calendar. Most of Western Europe had adopted the calendar some two centuries earlier, changing from the Julian calendar.

Included in this reform was the British Empire, including parts of what is now the United States.

The Julian calendar is still used alongside the Gregorian calendar in some parts of the world, which is the reason some countries in the east of Europe celebrate Easter and Christmas on different dates.

The Gregorian Calendar

On this day: Sweden’s move to the Gregorian Calendar

Pope Gregory XIII, portrait by Lavinia Fontana.Gregory_XIII

Pope Gregory XIII, portrait by Lavinia Fontana.

The 17th of February 1753 was Sweden’s last day of following the Julian calendar. The country moved to the Gregorian calendar, named for Pope Gregory XIII, the following day. The Gregorian calendar is the one used in Western society today.

Because of the change, the 17th of February was followed by the 1st of March.