Saturday, March 22, 2008

Why are we having an Early Easter?

I have heard a lot of people talking about Easter this year and how it kind of crept up on them. This got me thinking why it’s so early this year. It's fairly worthless information, as information goes, but fascinating nonetheless. I suppose I like fascinating, worthless bits of information.
As you may know, Easter is always the 1st Sunday after the 1st full moon after the Spring Equinox (which is March 20). This dating of Easter is based on the lunar calendar that Hebrew people used to identify passover, which is why it moves around on our Roman calendar. The earliest calendar date on which Easter can fall on is March 22nd, and the latest being April 25th. Based on the above, it is pretty rare when Easter falls on the 22nd of March. This year is the earliest Easter any of us will ever see the rest of our lives! And only the most elderly of our population have ever seen it this early (95 years old or above!). And none of us have ever, or will ever, see it a day earlier!
Seeing Easter fall on the earliest possible date, March 22, is an experience that has not been, and (barring some remarkable breakthroughs in longevity) will not be, witnessed by anyone alive today: It last occurred in the year 1818, and it will not happen again until 2285.

The odds are considerably better for witnessing a late Easter. Many people are still around from the last time Easter fell on April 25, an event which took place in 1943, and a good many people here today will likely still be around when Easter next falls on April 25, which will occur in 2038.

Here are the facts:
• The next time Easter will be this early (March 23) will be the year 2160 (152 years from now).
• The last time it was this early was 1913 so if you’re 95 or older, you are the only ones that were around for that!
• The next time it will be a day earlier, March 22, will be in the year 2285 (277 years from now).
• The last time it was on March 22 was 1818.
• The last time Easter fell on the latest date possible April 25th was 1943.
• The next time it will fall on April 25th is in the year 2038 (30 years from now). Happy Early Birthday/Easter Mandy!
• My 21st birthday was on Easter. The year was 2000. My birthday just in case you forgot is April 23rd.
• I will never have an Easter birthday again, which is sad because I don’t remember much of my 21st.
• My father in law Norm will have an Easter birthday in the year 2019.
• My Niece Robyn will have an Easter birthday in the year 2057. She will be turning 53 years old.
So, no one alive today has or will ever see it any earlier than this year!
Happy Easter,

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