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# A Million-Day Calendar with Explicit Julian-Gregorian Comparison

As just described, the Gregorian calendar officially began (and was officially implemented in some places) on October 15, 1582; the Julian calendar officially ended on the preceding day, which (according to the Julian) was October 4, 1582. But one could also say that October 4, 1582 (Julian) was the same as October 14, 1582 (Gregorian). This way of looking at the matter would require proleptic (i.e., anachronistic) calculations. Specifically, there would be a proleptic Gregorian calendar for all dates before October 15, 1582 on the Gregorian calendar, and there would also be a proleptic Julian calendar for all dates before January 1, 4 AD on the Julian calendar. October 13, 1582 (Gregorian) would be the same as October 3, 1582 (Julian); October 12 (G) would be the same as October 2 (J); and so forth, back in time. Since the Gregorian calendar did not exist before 1582, the statement that the Battle of Hastings occurred on October 14, 1066 would imply that it was October 14 according to the Julian calendar, not the Gregorian. While it could be confusing to cite proleptic Gregorian dates for events that were made part of history according to the Julian calendar, there seemed to be some applications for which a proleptic Gregorian calendar could be useful. For example, someone might be interested in determining whether a certain event happened on the actual equinox, as distinct from the date represented as the equinox in the Julian calendar. In developing the million-day calendar, I thought it would thus be useful to display Julian and Gregorian dates side-by-side, so as to confirm the accuracy of the calendar and/or of others' conversions between the two, as described more fully below. To a much greater degree than the proleptic Gregorian calendar, it seemed that the proleptic Julian calendar could be useful for a variety of historical situations. The concept here was, in essence, that one could work backwards to construct a Julian calendar for dates long before Julius Caesar, and could use that calendar to construct a list of standard dates when various historical events occurred. Although sources rarely seemed to specify what calendar they were using, it appeared that the proleptic Julian calendar was in fact being used widely for this purpose. There would certainly be scholarly disputes as to the conversion of ancient chronologies to Julian calendar terms (so as to interpret, for instance, a statement that a certain event occurred in the 245th year since the founding of Rome), but at least the calendar system itself would be consistent over centuries. Developing and Testing the Million-Day Calendar I added proleptic Julian calendar calculations to the million-day calendar. I started these calculations by adding a separate Julian Days table to the spreadsheet. The concept of the Julian Day was proposed by Joseph Scaliger in 1583. Julian Days were simply a count of days, beginning (for astronomical and historical reasons) with Day Zero at 12:00 noon on January 1, 4713 BC. (Julian Days could include decimal values for fractions of a day, such as 0.083 = 2 PM.) So, for instance, Julian Day 7 arrived at noon on January 8, 4713 BC. There were no years in the Julian Day system, but Julian Days could be used to calculate the proleptic Julian calendar, in which every fourth year would be treated as a leap year. Because there was no Year Zero in the Julian calendar, Scaliger's first year of 4713 BC was a leap year. (That is, in a system that had a Year Zero between 1 BC and 1 AD, 4713 BC would have been called 4712 BC.) The resulting calculations produced Julian dates, in the spreadsheet, that were