LEAP YEAR DAY
What is a leap year?
A leap year is a year in which one
extra day has been inserted at the end of February. A leap year consists
of 366 days, whereas other years, called common years, have 365 days.
The extra day, the 29 February, is the 60th day of a leap year in the Gregorian Calendar, with 306 days remaining.
When is the next Leap Year?
Leap years generally occur every four years. The next leap year will fall in 2012.
Why is it called a Leap Year?
Hundreds of years ago the leap year day had no
recognition in English law. The day was 'leapt over' and ignored, hence
the term 'leap year'.
Why do we have a leap Day?
The 29 February is known as a leap day
and it is added to the calendar during a leap year. This extra day is
added every four years to bring the solar year of 365¼ days into line
with the calendar year of 365 days.
A Leap Day Tradition
The one day of the year on which, traditionally, women can propose to men.
It was considered that as the day also had no legal status, it was
reasonable to assume that tradition had no status, so women took
advantage of this and proposed to the man they wanted to marry.
A law once existed in Scotland
forbidding a man to refuse a proposal made to him. Punishment for such
an offence was a large fine.
This tradition goes back to an old Irish legend concerning St. Patrick and St. Bridget in the 5th Century.
In the 5th century, a nun by the name of
St. Bridget, petitioned St. Patrick on behalf of all women in that they
have a more active role in choosing their husbands. As a result of this
request, women were allowed to propose to men once every four years.
Leap Day Superstition
In Scotland it is thought unlucky to be born on a Leap Year’s Day.
Interesting Fact about Leap Years
You can work out which year will be a year year by
dividing the year by 4. Years which are evenly divisible by 4, such as
2004 and 2008 are leap years. However, there are some exceptions in
A century year, that is, a year which
ends in two zeroes 1800, 1900, 2000, etc., is not a leap year unless it
is also evenly divisible by 400. This means that the year 2000 was a
leap year and 2400 will also be one, but 1800 and 1900 were not leap
Can you work out other century years which wont be leap
( 2100, 2200, and 2300 )