Rosalind Burgundy's Etruscan Historic Fiction
Did the Etruscans have Leap Year?
Nowadays we use the Gregorian calendar that provides for that extra day every four years. The Etruscan divisions of Time were mostly based on the sun and the moon for days, nights, months and seasonal banqueting in twelve to thirteen month years. Days started at high noon, not midnight.
"In research for my Etruscan Historic Fiction, Song of the Flutist and Odyssey of an Etruscan Noblewoman, I realized Etruscan concepts were unusual to modern thinking," Rosalind Burgundy says. "I focused on a Great Prediction to highlight that Etruria would last for a thousand years. To me, this was the driving force for afterlife burial customs of elaborate sarcophagi, tombs and cities of the dead."
According to the late Professor Jacques Heurgon of Latin Literature and Language at the Sorbonne in Paris, his book, Daily Life of the Etruscans notes that they had variable-length centuries based on the maximum duration of human life: "…generally more than a hundred years but could reach 119 to 123 years…. completion of each century was announced by miracles known to haruspices [diviners]…"
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