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The Mathematics of the Chinese Calendar Chin Hei Ting Veronica, 2
 

Summary: The Mathematics of the Chinese Calendar
1
Chin Hei Ting Veronica, 2
Helmer Aslaksen
ABSTRACT
The purpose of this paper is to present a clear description of the rules for the Chinese
calendar. For most of the years, the Chinese calendar is quite simple, but in some exceptional
cases, it can become very complicated. We will analyze one such case, namely the year 2033, in
details. We have also used a computer to test the validity of some popular claims about the
Chinese calendar.
INTRODUCTION
When people mention the date of the day, we usually refer to the Gregorian date. Hardly
anybody knows the answer for the Chinese calendar. However, it is important that we do not lose
the traditional Chinese culture and recognize the beauty of it.
Calendar computation was a crucial event in ancient China, because correct predictions could
directly affect the relationship between the Heaven and the Emperor. Due to discovery of many
astronomical theories and enhancement of skills to predict and observe astronomical events, rules
for the Chinese calendars changed throughout history. From the very primitive ones inscribed on
oracle bones, the calendar has developed to the form we use now, which is based on the actual
positions of the sun and the moon. Sadly to say, sources are relatively scarce and incomplete,

  

Source: Aslaksen, Helmer - Department of Mathematics, National University of Singapore

 

Collections: Mathematics