Trisha Shetty

Arabic names of calendar months

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The Arabic names of calendar months of the Gregorian calendar are usually phonetic Arabic pronunciations of the corresponding month names used in European languages. An exception is the Aramaic calendar used in Iraq and the Levant, which names most of its Gregorian months after Aramaic names for months of the Babylonian calendar that occur at roughly the same time of year.

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The Gregorian calendar is and has been used in nearly all the countries of the Arab world, in many places long before European occupation of some of them. All Arab states use the Gregorian calendar for civil purposes. The names of the Gregorian months as used in Egypt, Sudan, and Yemen are widely regarded as standard across the Arab world, although the Syro-Mesopotamian names are often used alongside them. In other Arab countries some modification or actual changes in naming or pronunciation of months were observed. The names of the Gregorian calendar months in the different countries of the Arab world were as follows:

Levant and Mesopotamia

These names are used primarily in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Palestine and Jordan. These months are likely derived from the Aramaic names of the Babylonian calendar, and eight of the twelve names are cognate with the names of the approximately equivalent months of the Hebrew calendar.

Nine of these names were used in the Ottoman Rumi calendar, of which five remain in use in modern Turkish.

Libya (1969–2011)

The names of months used in Libya were derived from various sources, and were assembled after Muammar al-Gaddafi's seizure of power in 1969 and abolished after the 17 February 2011 revolution. The decision of changing calendar names was adopted in June 1986. Although the Libyan calendar follows the same sequence of the (renamed) Gregorian months, it counts the years from the death of the prophet Muhammad. This reckoning is therefore ten years behind the solar hegira used in Afghanistan and Persia.

Algeria and Tunisia

The names of the Gregorian months in Algeria and Tunisia are based on the French names of the months, reflecting France's long colonisation of these countries (1830-1962, in Algeria and 1881-1956 in Tunisia). The original French names are therefore listed below.

Morocco

As Morocco was long part of the Roman Empire, the long-standing agricultural Berber calendar of the country preserves the Julian calendar and (in modified form) the names of its months. There are regional variations of the Berber calendar, since some communities did not recognise the Julian 29 February in century years where the Gregorian calendar had no equivalent date. When Morocco adopted the Gregorian calendar for civil purposes, the names of the months were taken from this local tradition.

References

Arabic names of calendar months Wikipedia


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