Tag Archives: February 29

Leap Day Luck and Lore

A person born on Leap Day is called a leaping or leaper. While some may find it unfair they only have a true birthday every four years, others relish in the fact that they can celebrate a full day early if they wish. In Scotland it is considered unlucky to be born on Leap Day, and in other cultures the entire year is believed to bring bad luck. For example, in Greece it is unlucky to marry during a leap year.

While marrying on a leap year may be avoided, getting engaged is perfectly acceptable. In fact, on Leap Day women are allowed to propose to their man if they choose. Centuries ago a man even had to pay a fine or give a gift if he declined the proposal!

Sources: about.com


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How Do You Know If It’s a Leap Year?

A leap year occurs every four years, right? Well, unfortunately it is a little more complicated than that. Because the Earth’s revolution around the sun is just slightly less than 365.25 days, every once in a while a leap year must be skipped to keep our seasons on track.

Most of us were taught if a year is divisible by 4, it is a leap year. However, there is an exception to every rule. In the case of leap years, the exception happens in century years, or years ending with two zeros. A century year is not a leap year unless it is also divisible by 400. This means that 2000 was a leap year, but 1900 was not, and 2100 will be skipped as well.

Sources: Wikipedia.org

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Why Is There a Leap Year?

A common year is 365 days long, but a leap year adds an extra day to the end of February every four years making it 366 days long. Why do we do this?

Our year is based on how long it takes Earth to orbit the sun. The earth makes one complete revolution around the sun in 365.242 days, so we include February 29 to make up for the lost six hours every year. If we didn’t, our calendar would be off by almost a month after just 100 years!

Sources: timeanddate.com, projectbritian.com


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