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The lost Roman calendars of ancient Macedonia

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As a result of the conquests of Alexander the Great, the lunisolar Macedonian calendar became the most widely circulated among all the lunisolar Greek calendars. However, despite its spread, two Roman calendars, generally unknown in the scientific community, were developed and used inside Macedonia itself during the Roman occupation of Greece. The older calendar used the so-called Macedonian year’. This system started in 148 BC to emphasize the importance of the victory of the Roman general Quintus Caecilius Metellus Macedonicus against Pseudo-Philippus Andriscus, King of Macedonia. The newer calendrical system, which absorbed the older system, used the Augustian or respectable year’ bearing its name from Octavius Augustus; its starting point was the date of the catalytic victory of Octavius over Marcus Antonius and Cleopatra at Actium (31 BC). The solar Octavian calendar survived until the sixth or seventh century in the Macedonian Territory.

Keywords: Actium; Macedonia; Octavius; Quintus Caecilius Metellus; Roman calendars

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Astrophysics, Astronomy and Mechanics, School of Physics, University of Athens, Panepistemiopolis, Zografos 157 84, Athens, Greece 2: 22127 Needles Street, Chatsworth, California, 91311, USA

Publication date: August 1, 2006

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