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The Jewish Leap Year

The Jewish Leap Year


The Jewish "leap year", which occurs seven times in a 19-year cycle, has 13 months instead of the regular year's 12. This is so that the lunar-based Jewish year should remain aligned with the solar seasons (12 lunar months make up a total of 354 days -- slightly more than 11 days short of the 365.25 day solar cycle). The added month is called "Adar I" and is inserted before the month of Adar (termed "Adar II" in leap years).

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Eliezer Zalmanov for April 3, 2016

Re: jewish birthday It's always good to feel young, regardless of how many years actually passed since your birth.

If you were born in a leap year, then in a non-leap year your Jewish birthday is celebrated in regular Adar. Reply

Anonymous australia March 31, 2016

jewish birthday if born on a leap year, feb 6th 1957-(apparently my birthday would be 5th adar 1 5717.) how many leap years since my birth date? How 'old' would i be?
my kids and I laugh that I'd be 19 but how old would I actually be?

Nobody has been able to help me, so I'd really appreciate it.
thanks Reply

Vivian USA March 12, 2016

Leap Year: when is the "leap month" reduced How do you calculate the reducing of the "leap month" when it goes above 18/19? Does it fall in February or March of the Gregorian calendar? Reply

Juda February 16, 2016

Re: Adar 25 I think that in general, unless otherwise specified it is assumed that it occurred in a regular non-leap year or in the second Adar. Reply

Anonymous February 10, 2016

Adar 25 I am researching some historical facts about Babylonian king of Nebuchadnezzar. I read an article that he died on Adar 25. I am not familiar on the Jewish calendar. This year there are two Adar months. So in which Adar month, I or II, do I have to consider for the date of the death of the Nebuchadnezzar? March 5(25 Adar I) or April 4 (25 Adar II)?
Thank you for your reply beforehand. Reply

Anonymous money, ny October 25, 2015

when was the last leap year? Reply

Shaul Wolf June 19, 2015

Re: There are many different interpretations given for this idea, and it is used as a reference for various different ideas. One of the simplest interpretations is that each of the six days of creation correspond to one millennium; the first day to the first millennium the second to the second etc.Being that we are currently in the sixth millennium, our times correspond to the sixth day of creation. The closer we get to the end of the millennium, the closer we approach the day of Shabbat, which will result in eternal rest with the era of Moshiach. Reply

Anonymous June 18, 2015

Please explain one day is a thousand years and where are we. Reply Staff via May 17, 2015

Re Shemitah No, it was not a shemitah year. We are currently in a shemitah year now. The last one prior to that was 2008-5768 Reply

TKICBS Canada, BC October 3, 2017
in response to Staff:

If a leap year comes every 2 to 3 years how could the last one be in 2008? Reply

Anonymous monsey May 6, 2015

5771 a leap year? was 5771 a leap year? Reply Staff via February 13, 2014

To Anonymous The year 5745 was not a leap year. Reply

Anonymous Copenhagen February 7, 2014

Question : Was the year 5745 ( Tav Shin Mem Heh ) a leap year ? Reply

Ounbbl Chicago, IL February 24, 2013

Leap years Years 3, 6, 8, etc. you said. But of what calendar year? Gregorian (C.E.), or rabbinic Hebrew (A.M.), or Scriptural year?

Frank Yonkers, NY July 19, 2012

Calculation To determine whether a Jewish year is a leap year, one must find its position in the 19-year Metonic cycle. This position is calculated by dividing the Jewish year number by 19 and finding the remainder. For example, Jewish year 5771 divided by 19 results in a remainder of 14, indicating that it is year 14 of the Metonic cycle. Since there is no year 0, a remainder of 0 indicates that the year is year 19 of the cycle. (See also Golden number (time).)

Years 3, 6, 8, 11, 14, 17, and 19 the Metonic cycle are leap years. Reply

Barry California August 9, 2017
in response to Frank:

How did you come up with a remainder of 14. I divided 5771 by 19 and came up with a quotient of 303.73684 so how do I get to 14 from there?
As I type this we are in the Jewish year of 5777. So dividing by 19 I get 304.05263. I trying to find out when the next Jewish leap year will occur but no site I've visited as any indication of that. Reply

Steve66a September 8, 2017
in response to Barry:

Remember grade school math?..
19 goes into 5771 303 times with remainder of 14 (303x19=5757) Reply

Walter Babylon, NY/USA February 21, 2011

calendar calculation algorithms I am a software engineer/ mathematician and I was wondering if there are algorithms to calculate the calendar accurately. I have tried to follow all the evolution of the calendar during the centuries, it is very interesting but it appears to me that there is always some human decision in the definition of the calendar even today. Pardon my ignorance on the subject, my interest is purely mathematical algorithmic. Can someone give me some references or directions about it. Any help will be highly appreciated. Thank You, Reply

Since Biblical times the months and years of the Jewish calendar have been established by the cycles of the moon and the sun. Torah law prescribes that the months follow closely the course of the moon, from its birth each month to the next New Moon.
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