TMG-L ArchivesArchiver > TMG > 2003-05 > 1052785710
From: Gordon Banks <>
Subject: Re: [TMG] Problem with early dates
Date: 12 May 2003 17:29:12 -0700
References: <firstname.lastname@example.org> <001d01c3172b$5728f380$6401a8c0@charliexii> <email@example.com> <3EC01F36.B8873564@infoave.net>
I wonder what it would take to make the BC dates regular. Why not just
accept a minus sign in front of the date? Whatever arithmetic functions
are used to do the calculations in TMG should still work with negative
integers. You then are left only with the problem that there is no year
The people I am putting in now have a very real probability of being my
actual ancestors. For anyone who has Plantagenet descent (this includes
a lot of Americans with colonial ancestors), Don Stone has a fascinating
book that gives descents from antiquity for Edward I, mainly through the
kings of Armenia back to Cyrus the Great and the Ptolemies.
On Mon, 2003-05-12 at 15:24, Richard Brogger wrote:
> Gordon Banks wrote:
> > For the first time this weekend I was entering people prior to 100 AD
> > and find that TMG won't handle these dates properly. If the date is
> > between 10 and 100 AD, it generates a "fix century" error, although by
> > ignoring you can finally get the program to accept the date. Between 1
> > and 10 AD, even if you enter something like 0005 for the date, it makes
> > it an irregular date.
> > For BC dates, it makes everything irregular and doesn't sort properly.
> > Any way to fix this?
> Hi Gordon,
> In a word, No.
> Since there were a multitude of calendars used in the past, my wish
> was that the Julian day become another means of storing dates.
> How many days have you lived? To determine this, multiply your age by
> 365, add the number of days since your last birthday until today, and
> account for all leap years. Chances are your answer would be wrong.
> Astronomers, however, find it convenient to express dates and time
> intervals in days rather than in years, months, and days. This is done
> by placing events within the Julian period.
> The Julian period was devised in 1582 by the French classical scholar
> Joseph Scaliger (1540-1609) and named after his father Julius Caesar
> Scaliger (1484-1558), not after the Julian calendar. Joseph Scaliger
> began Julian Day (JD) #1 at noon, Jan. 1, 4713 B.C., the most recent
> time that 3 major chronological cycles began on the same day-(1) the
> 28-year solar cycle, after which dates in the Julian calendar (e.g.,
> Feb. 11) return to the same days of the week (e.g., Monday); (2) the
> 19-year lunar cycle, after which the phases of the moon return to the
> same dates of the year; and (3) the 15-year indiction cycle, used in
> ancient Rome to regulate taxes. It will take 7,980 years to complete
> the period, the product of 28, 19, and 15.
> The World Almanac® and Book of Facts
> Since any day on any calendar can be converted to the Julian day, it
> then becomes easy to calculate the number of days between two known
> dates, even when those dates are from two different calendars. Long
> ago I searched the web and at that time found that formulas, for
> conversion to and from the Julian day, exist for several different
> calendars. I suspect that those who use TMG for more than just their
> known ancestors, often have need to enter dates that are not within
> TMG's present range.
> In a TMG data set, I am entering every person in the Bible. Whenever
> possible, I like to tie events in the Bible to dated events from
> history and archeology. It would be nice if TMG could record those
> dates as regular dates. Some of the features in TMG are dependant on
> regular dates and I wish that I could use those features.
> Richard Brogger
> ==== TMG Mailing List ====
> Send all messages and replies to <>.