A leap year ... why ?

2016 is a leap year which means we have 29 days this February. But why ?

The Earth flings about the Sun and takes a year or 365 days to make a complete revolution (If it took longer we would have a longer year like Mars which is 668 Mars days).

The Earth’s orbit around the Sun actually takes 365 days and 6 hours so you could say we return a quarter day late. To make up for this tardiness us Earthlings have decided to make an extra day every four years (with a few rare exceptions to confuse things).

So ... if you were born on February 29th you could have some fun by declaring youth with only a few birthdays celebrated. So if you were a “leapling” what day would you celebrate your birthday in a common year ? Legally, different jurisdictions have different ideas, the United Kingdom chooses March 1st , and New Zealand February 28th, as for Australia .. call a solicitor.

Leap years are supposed by tradition to be a year when a woman is “permitted” to propose. The tradition dates back to 5th century Ireland, a time one supposes when men learned to run very quickly.


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