O/T Why is Easter Early This Year?

Submitted: Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 18:19
ThreadID: 55597 Views:2456 Replies:10 FollowUps:13
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None of us will live to see easter this early in the year again. I thought this was interesting:

WHY IS EASTER EARLY THIS YEAR?

In simple terms Easter Sunday is the first Sunday following the first full Moon occurring after March 20 (which was the equinox date in 325 A.D.)*

This dating of Easter is based on the lunar calendar that Hebrew people used to identify Passover, which is why it moves around on our Roman calendar. Easter Sunday always falls between March 22 and April 25 (inclusive). However Easter Sundays at the earliest and latest dates are rare.

For 2008 Easter Sunday is March 23. Based on the above, Easter can actually be one day earlier (March 22) than this year but that is very rare. This year is the earliest Easter any of us will ever see for the rest of our lives! And only the most elderly of our population (95 years old or above!) have ever seen it this early before. And none of us have ever, or will ever, see it a day earlier!

Here are the facts:

1) The next time Easter will be this early again (March 23) will be the year 2228 (220 years from now). The last time it was this early was 1913 (so if you're 95 or older, you are the only ones that were around for that!).

2) The next time it will be a day earlier, March 22, will be in the year 2285 (277 years from now). The last time it was on March 22 was 1818. So, no one alive to day has or will ever see it any earlier than this year!

3) For the future – in 2011 Easter Sunday is April 24, making Anzac day and Easter Monday coincide.


*Note: Specifically Easter Sunday is the first Sunday following the Paschal Full Moon (PFM) date for the year. In June 325 A.D. astronomers approximated astronomical full moon dates for the Christian church, calling them Ecclesiastical Full Moon (EFM) dates. From 326 A.D. the PFM date has always been the EFM date after March 20 (which was the equinox date in 325 A.D.).

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Reply By: Kiwi & "Mahindra" - Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 18:29

Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 18:29
Its celebrated 2 full moons after a something-or other thats why its early this yr....
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Follow Up By: Shaker - Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 18:37

Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 18:37
Isn't the full explanation above? ^^^^^^^^^^
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Reply By: Member - Hugh (WA) - Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 19:27

Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 19:27
Hi Saharaman,

So where were you last night? This was a topic of discussion at a dinner party my wife I went to - if only this had come in a day earlier. Suffice to say, no one did the topic justice in comparison to your detailed explanation.

Thanks,
Hugh
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Follow Up By: Saharaman (aka Geepeem) - Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 20:13

Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 20:13
HI Kim,

Thanks for the comments. You could always arrange another dinner party so you are armed with all the right info,
Cheers,
Glen
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Reply By: ian - Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 20:00

Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 20:00
Blame the Romans!
Ian
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Follow Up By: Member - Matt M (ACT) - Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 14:31

Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 14:31
Yeh. What have the Romans ever done for us?
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Follow Up By: Bware (Tweed Valley) - Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 19:09

Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 19:09
LOL Matt

That's from a classic.

Regards from 'a man called Brian'
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Reply By: Member - John W (WA) - Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 20:12

Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 20:12
I always was lead to believe it was the 4th full moon of the year,
and something about the following sunday
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Reply By: obee - Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 20:39

Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 20:39
what ever it is, I am amazed that the whole world can manage to agree on the date. We cant even get daylight saving to work at the same time in only six states and a half.

And anyway, why cant we draw a line down the middle and every one stick to the one time all year and stop this changing clocks all the time?

owen
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Follow Up By: Nomadic Navara - Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 21:51

Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 21:51
Actually, the whole world can not agree on the date of Easter. Read all about it at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Easter

PeterD
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Follow Up By: Member - Oldplodder (QLD) - Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 18:16

Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 18:16
I understand Constantine got every one a to agree on a date at Nicea in 324 AD, and how to work it out.
Had been some debate before then, and the passover date was followed by many.

Read somewhere that at the conference of all church leaders at Nicea, that he put a ring of Roman soldiers around the place (which he could do as emperor), and wouldn't let any one leave until it was all decided.
The Nicean creed was also developed at the time, as an update to the Apostolic creed.

Since then, the Orthodox churches kept following the Julian calendar, while Europe switched to the Gregorian calendar during the 17th and 18th centuries, depending on where you lived. There is about 18 days difference now.
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Reply By: Steve Ellis - Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 21:21

Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 21:21
Great explanation Saharaman. Question. In 2011 when as you explain Easter Monday and Anzac Day Coincide do we get 2 public hols for the one day? Do those who have to work on that day as I used to, get paid double time times 2?. Believe me it will come up. Ask Kevin.
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Follow Up By: Steve Ellis - Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 21:23

Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 21:23
Anzac Day is April 25.
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Follow Up By: Saharaman (aka Geepeem) - Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 22:06

Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 22:06
HI Steve,

With Easter Sunday April 24, that is correct - easter Monday and Anzac day coincide. I suspect that Tuesday will be declared a public holiday as well .. but I think there could be one State that have an Easter Tuesday holiday anyway?
It will be a great 5 day weekend probably in 2011
glen
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Reply By: Member - Roger B (VIC) - Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 21:43

Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 21:43
As below:

WESTERN EASTER SUNDAY DATES TIL 2019
~~~~~~~
23 April 2000
31 March 2002
20 April 2003
27 March 2005
16 April 2006
8 April 2007
23 March 2008
12 April 2009


4 April 2010
24 April 2011
8 April 2012
31 March 2013
20 April 2014
5 April 2015
27 March 2016
16 April 2017
1 April 2018
21 April 2019

Cheers.

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Follow Up By: Member - DAZA (QLD) - Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 22:24

Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 22:24
HI All

You are all wrong.

Easter Bunny is on a promise, if he gets home early.


Cheers
Daza.
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Follow Up By: Member - Pedro the One (QLD) - Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 03:14

Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 03:14
I have it on good authority that there will be NO EASTER BUNNY this year, due to circumstances evidenced below !
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Reply By: Member - Roger B (VIC) - Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 22:54

Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 at 22:54
The Easter Bunnies wife may be down their burrow having a" Hare" Do while she waits for him !!!!!!!!!!
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Follow Up By: sastra - Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 10:43

Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 10:43
A Brazilian hare-do always does it for me.
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Reply By: Steve Ellis - Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 16:54

Monday, Mar 17, 2008 at 16:54
Another reason easter is early is that the weather is much warmer for getting away. Esp in South Oz
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Reply By: Dunco (NSW) - Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 10:52

Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 10:52
Why is it then that Christmas is never different.

The day of someones birth is celebrated on THAT day.
The death of someone is remembered on THAT day.


?????????????????????????????????????????????????
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Follow Up By: Saharaman (aka Geepeem) - Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 16:34

Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 16:34
Good question Dunco,
I don't know but I'm sure someone will post the reason.
I just researched the calendar dates side of it - not the historical reasons as such or why Christmas is fixed. All I know is that the date for Christmas is ficticious as it would be winter in Middle East at that time of year - certainly no shepherds out watching their sheep in December. But how and why Dec 25 was selected for Christmas I do not know.
But would be interesting to see why one is fixed and one varies. so,
Cheers,
Glen

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Follow Up By: Bware (Tweed Valley) - Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 18:29

Tuesday, Mar 18, 2008 at 18:29
Hi Dunco,

Apparently when the Romans decided to adopt Christianity as their official religion, they chose these dates of celebration to coincide with dates that were already being used by the 'pagans' as a way of helping convert them. Xmas day was actually the Winter solstice (in the Northern Hemisphere where all this took place), a very important date for the pagans. Now the solstice is the 22nd of December due to variations in the earth's movements over the last 2000 years, but the 25th has stuck.

As pointed out above, Easter is the first Sunday after the first full moon after the Spring equinox (Nthn hemisphere), also a very important date in the pagan calendar.

Neither of these dates are relevant to the actual date of birth or date of death of the Christian messiah. No one knows the actual dates. Of course, you first have to accept that Jesus is an actual historical figure....

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