scouts-l Mail Archive for November of 1999: Re: Millenniums and birthdays and counting
Milt Forsberg (miltf@UX1.CSO.UIUC.EDU
Sat Nov 20 1999 - 23:42:28 CST
If you ask the boy who was born in 1979 how old he is, what does he reply?
Normally, I would expect him to say, "I am 20". That seems to be the
answer that most of us would give, not "I am in my 21st year". The same
applies to the turn of the century. We will be in our 2000th year but the
new century begins at the completion of the 2000th year. Unfortunately,
we have been (mis)lead by much of our news media with the hype that the
century turns in a few weeks, instead of a year and a few weeks.
On Sat, 20 Nov 1999, Cheryl Singhal wrote:
> Perhaps this makes more sense to me because I do genealogy and deal with
> on a twice-daily basis. Perhaps I'm simply not mathematically inclined
> to make things difficult. Whichever, here's the explanation for my
> There is a difference between being 2000 years old and being in one's
> 2000th year. That difference is one day...your birth anniversary, but
> unless one is getting very detailed, it is generally reported as a year.
> A boy born in 1979 is in his 21st year but was only 20 yrs old on his
> last birth anniversary.
> On that basis, I find it clear and convincing that the millennium will
> roll over at 12:01 am on 1-1-2000.
> If someone happens to have Herod's regnal dates handy or the Jewish
> calendar dates that correspond to the Roman occupation, we can probably
> work up a real discussion. (g)
> Whichever, enjoy New Year's Eve.