I need help with dates

+5 votes
how to interpret dates i.e.  5 mon 26 day 1646 is what month?   May or July?
in Policy and Style by Laurie Hughes G2G Crew (370 points)
retagged by Ellen Smith

I too have issues with Dates. I found books and tombstone on this person with different dates of death. I added all I finding someone made big boo boo on this one. I made note of discrepancies is about all I can do. Anyone have suggestions on this one.



3 Answers

+3 votes
Cant be 100% sure, but I would think that Mon stands for month, so in my oppinion May
by Shaun Doust G2G6 Pilot (345k points)
+5 votes
It depends on what Country and what calender was being used at the time. In the UK, the Gregorian Calender was introduced in 1752 and the new year began on 1st January...prior to 1752, the Julian Calander was in place with the new year beginning on Lady Day 25th March. So March was month 1, April month 2, May was month 3 and so on...

This is why dates prior to 1752 that fell between January 1st and May 24th are recorded using the dual date system e.g. 14th February 1750/1 (1750 being old style,1751 being new style)
by Michelle Wilkes G2G6 Pilot (142k points)
I knew it was a trick question!
It's only in the British world that the transition to the Gregorian calendar occurred in 1752. Most of the rest of Europe had transitioned much earlier, when Pope Gregory introduced the new calendar. And some other jurisdictions continued using the old calendar long after the British abandoned it.
Think there is a typo in the 2nd paragraph; should be March rather than May.
+3 votes
Is this a Quaker date? Or a date referring to a Quaker? You may want to consult the chart on this page:


(The blogs are free to read.)
by Dina Grozev G2G6 Pilot (138k points)
As a lifelong Quaker, I'm not aware that Quaker dating is different in how to count the months, i.e. 1st month is Jan after 1752 and Mar before the change of calendar.  The idea was just to avoid using pagan names for month names...

The use of numbers months was not unique to Quakers. I've seen a number of colonial American records that include numbered months. They can be tricky for us moderns to interpret.

Today I edited a pair of duplicate profiles for a woman (not a Quaker) whose birth was recorded on "11 : 12 : 1658".

  • One profile said she was born on 11 December 1658. Whoever recorded that date correctly observed that the first number was the day and the second number was the month (a clue is that the records included other dates where the first number was something like 21), but they didn't know that in 1658 March was the first month of the year in the British world, making December the 10th month, not the 12th month.
  • The other profile said she was born on 12 January 1659. Whoever recorded that date mistakenly assumed that the first number represented the month, but they knew about the numbering of months, so they interpreted the date as 12th day of 11th month and thus 12 January 1659 in the modern style.

She was born on the 11th day of the 12th month of 1658, which corresponds to the modern style date 11 February 1659.

Yes, that's why it has four slots for comparison, but not all of the entries are different.

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