Telling Time

People in the City generally reckon time in terms of the regular cycles of everyday life--when the cryers start in the morning, various calls to service at the many temples, when a local fruit merchant makes her rounds, when Mom's shift with the Watch ends--as well as dawn, noon, and dusk. However, sometimes more precise timekeeping is needed, if only to know when to ring the temple bells or change the shifts of the Watch. For those purposes, sundials are most often employed, though even more precise timekeeping (such as for a delicate alchemical process) may employ water-, sand-, or pendulum-driven clocks. For accurate reckoning, the day is divided into 10 hours, each of a hundred minutes (and each of which is in turn reckoned as 100 segments, but very few non-magical devices can manage such accuracy). Dawn is reckoned to occur at 10 o'clock (or sometimes "the zero hour"), when the old days ends and the new begins, and dusk falls at 5 o'clock. [Since the day on Aega is the same length as here on Earth, their minutes are nearly half-again as long as ours, but their seconds a bit shorter.]

Longer time periods are more often reckoned by the calendar, with the cycles of life conforming to the calendar, rather than the other way around. Most circulating merchants, for example, attempt to plan a route that takes an integral number of weeks so that they always arrive in a place on the same day of the week. The week is 10 days long, and the 9th day is traditionally considered a holy day (9 is generally an auspicious number). Most businesses are closed on Diwidiwi, and people take the opportunity to carry out important and time-consuming rituals and observances. Due to the large number of these which are religious, and the large number of people who attend a temple on only that day each week, it is popularly known as Godsday. The rest of the names for the days of the week are corruptions of the Old Tongue, not spoken since the time of Gith. The year is divided into 10 months of unequal length, and 4 special holidays. Firstinter is the celebration of the Winter solstice, while Firsummer celebrates the Summer solstice. Likewise, Winterby and Sommerby celebrate the Spring and Autumnal equinoxes. While there are 1000 days between Winter solstices and the week is 10 days long, the days of the week cycle through the calendar because the holidays are considered to fall "between the days." So if the last day of Tarsan (the month before Firsummer) falls on Palotdaeg, Urugg (the month after Firsummer) begins on Swiedrdaeg, with 12 days of festival falling in between.

The years occur in a continuous march, though there are two counts in popular use. The older is "oF" or "of Founding", which dates from the founding of Aventdernopolis. By this reckoning, it is the 2,305,551st year since Aventdernier invoked a powerful enchantment to raise the unaging innermost curtainwall of the city directly from the bedrock (2305551oF). Since taking the City as its seat of government, the Democratic Confederacy of Serfu has been formally using the "Royal Year" (RY). According to that system, this is RY875, and this notation has grown in popularity in the last couple of centuries, simply because it leads to much smaller numbers.

In addition to clocks, calendars, and seasonal changes, Aega has two moons that aid in tracking time. The smaller, Brightstar, appears as little more than an extremely bright point of light, which appears to move from the northern Tropic to the southern Tropic and back again over the course of a day, reaching it's northernmost point shortly before dawn on the Summer solstice (and thus it's southernmost point some while before dusk most days of the year). What's more, Brightstar is bright enough to be seen during the day, except when it crosses too near Sol. With such regularity, Brightstar is often used by those who need to keep time at night. The City is within the tropics, so the length of the day doesn't alter terribly much over the course of the year, and thus sundials and clocks don't deviate appreciably, but the clash between Sol and Brightstar is enough that most people use one or the other, depending on when they are generally active. The other important use of Brightstar is for navigation. It always remains just over 12 degrees east of the City, no matter how far north or south it is, and so serves as an excellent reference point, especially at sea. Luna is much more Moon-like, having a large whitish disk with discernable variations, though it is noticably larger visually. It takes Luna 93 days to cycle through her faces, from new moon to new moon, and it is from this cycle that the lengths of the months were originally devised.

Three other astronomical details of Aega are of note. First, there are orders of magnitude fewer bright stars in the night sky of Aega than that of Earth. This leads to a much greater commonality of constellations observed by different peoples, and also means that Luna-less nights are not nearly so bright. Second, Sol is blue. It fluctuates in a seemingly random manner from bright cyan to intense navy, with corresponding--though much subtler--changes in the light given off. The change from brightest to darkest day is less than that from noon on the Summer solstice to noon on the Winter solstice, and it rarely changes appreciably in less than several days--more typically it takes it weeks or months to fluctuate noticably. Also, Sol appears much larger in the sky than does the Sun--almost 20 times larger in diameter. Due to the color of Sol, the sky of Aega is generally a light purple--violet, say. Sunsets not only contain the familiar pinks, reds, and oranges of Earth, but occasionally venture into the yellows and even greens. Third, while Luna is both somewhat larger and somewhat closer to Aega than the Moon is to Earth, it is still more than an order of magnitude smaller than Sol, visually, so complete solar eclipses are impossible. For similar reasons, complete lunar eclipses never occur.

Days of the Week

The Seasons

Winter Solstice:
Firstinter 4
Spring Equinox:
Qlb 67
Summer Solstice:
Firsummer 4
Autumnal Equinox:
Jhud 58

the Festivals

Firsummer
celebration of the "Day of the Light", longest day of the year
Sommerby
celebration of the harvest
Firstinter
celebration of the "Night of the Lady", longest night of the year
Winterby
celebration of the end of winter and the coming of spring

the Serfune Calendar

For RY875. New moons are indicated by an asterisk next to the day.

TARSAN
 I    Y    A    L    P    S    K    D    G    O

  1    2    3    4    5    6    7    8    9   10*
 11   12   13   14   15   16   17   16   17   20
 21   22   23   24   25   26   27   28   29   30
 31   32   33   34   35   36   37   38   39   40
 41   42   43   44   45   46   47   48   49   50
 51   52   53   54   55   56   57   58   59   60
 61   62   63   64   65   66   67   68   69   70
 71   72   73   74   75   76   77   78   79   80
 81   82   83   84   85   86   87   88   89   90
 91   92   93   94



FIRSUMMER

     1       2       3       4       5       6
     7       8       9*     10      11      12



URUGG
 I    Y    A    L    P    S    K    D    G    O

                      1    2    3    4    5    6
  7    8    9   10   11   12   13   14   15   16
 17   18   19   20   21   22   23   24   25   26
 27   28   29   30   31   32   33   34   35   36
 37   38   39   40   41   42   43   44   45   46
 47   48   49   50   51   52   53   54   55   56
 57   58   59   60   61   62   63   64   65   66
 67   68   69   70   71   72   73   74   75   76
 77   78   79   80   81   82   83   84   85



SADWDAR
 I    Y    A    L    P    S    K    D    G    O

                                               1
  2    3    4    5*   6    7    8    9   10   11
 12   13   14   15   16   17   18   19   20   21
 22   23   24   25   26   27   28   29   30   31
 32   33   34   35   36   37   38   39   40   41
 42   43   44   45   46   47   48   49   50   51
 52   53   54   55   56   57   58   59   60   61
 62   63   64   65   66   67   68   69   70   71
 72   73   74   75   76   77   78   79   80   81
 82   83   84   85   86   87   88   89   90   91
 92   93   94   95   96   97   98*  99



JHUD
 I    Y    A    L    P    S    K    D    G    O

                                          1    2
  3    4    5    6    7    8    9   10   11   12
 13   14   15   16   17   18   19   20   21   22
 23   24   25   26   27   28   29   30   31   32
 33   34   35   36   37   38   39   40   41   42
 43   44   45   46   47   48   49   50   51   52
 53   54   55   56   57   58   59   60   61   62
 63   64   65   66   67   68   69   70   71   72
 73   74   75   76   77   78   79   80   81   82
 83   84   85   86   87   88   89   90   91   92*
 93   94   95   96   97   98   99  100  101



SOMMERBY

      1        2       3        4        5



ZHONGMEI
 I    Y    A    L    P    S    K    D    G    O

                                               1
  2    3    4    5    6    7    8    9   10   11
 12   13   14   15   16   17   18   19   20   21
 22   23   24   25   26   27   28   29   30   31
 32   33   34   35   36   37   38   39   40   41
 42   43   44   45   46   47   48   49   50   51
 52   53   54   55   56   57   58   59   60   61
 62   63   64   65   66   67   68   69   70   71
 72   73   74   75   76   77   78   79*  80   81
 82   83   84   85   86   87   88   89   90   91
 92   93   94   95   96   97   98   99  100  101
102  103  104  105  106  107  108  109  110  111
112  113  114



KHARWHON
 I    Y    A    L    P    S    K    D    G    O

                 1    2    3    4    5    6    7
  8    9   10   11   12   13   14   15   16   17
 18   19   20   21   22   23   24   25   26   27
 28   29   30   31   32   33   34   35   36   37
 38   39   40   41   42   43   44   45   46   47
 48   49   50   51   52   53   54   55   56   57
 58*  59   60   61   62   63   64   65   66   67
 68   69   70   71   72   73   74   75   76   77
 78   79   80   81   82   83   84



FIRSTINTER

   1       2       3       4       5       6
   7       8       9      10      11      12



PFUD
 I    Y    A    L    P    S    K    D    G    O

                                     1    2    3
  4    5    6    7    8    9   10   11   12   13
 14   15   16   17   18   19   20   21   22   23
 24   25   26   27   28   29   30   31   32   33
 34   35   36   37   38   39   40   41   42   43
 44   45   46   47   48   49   50   51   52   53
 54   55*  56   57   58   59   60   61   62   63
 64   65   66   67   68   69   70   71   72   73
 74   75   76   77   78   79   80   81   82   83
 84   85   86   87   88   89   90   91   92   93
 94   95   96   97   98   99  100  101  102  103
104  105  106  107



SCHTASSE
 I    Y    A    L    P    S    K    D    G    O

                      1    2    3    4    5    6
  7    8    9   10   11   12   13   14   15   16
 17   18   19   20   21   22   23   24   25   26
 27   28   29   30   31   32   33   34   35   36
 37   38   39   40   41*  42   43   44   45   46
 47   48   49   50   51   52   53   54   55   56
 57   58   59   60   61   62   63   64   65   66
 67   68



QLB
 I    Y    A    L    P    S    K    D    G    O

            1    2    3    4    5    6    7    8
  9   10   11   12   13   14   15   16   17   18
 19   20   21   22   23   24   25   26   27   28
 29   30   31   32   33   34   35   36   37   38
 39   40   41   42   43   44   45   46   47   48
 49   50   51   52   53   54   55   56   57   58
 59   60   61   62   63   64   65   66*  67   68
 69   70   71   72   73   74   75   76   77   78
 79   80   81   82   83   84   85   86   87   88
 89   90   91   92   93   94   95   96


WINTERBY
      1        2       3        4        5



XINFUYUAN

 I    Y    A    L    P    S    K    D    G    O

                                          1    2
  3    4    5    6    7    8    9   10   11   12
 13   14   15   16   17   18   19   20   21   22
 23   24   25   26   27   28   29   30   31   32
 33   34   35   36   37   38   39   40   41   42
 43   44   45   46   47   48   49   50   51   52
 53   54   55   56   57   58*  59   60   61   62
 63   64   65   66   67   68   69   70   71   72
 73   74   75   76   77   78   79   80   81   82
 83   84   85   86   87   88   89   90   91   92
 93   94   95   96   97   98   99  100  101  102
103  104  105  106  107  108  109  110  111  112
113  114  115  116  117  118

woodelfwritings
created by woodelf@rpg.net