The purpose for these ancient festivals remains unclear among religions and cultural historians, but it is undeniable that well established annual celebrations have become the norm for societies around the world.
The ancient Babylonian calendar was lunisolar, and around the year 2000 BC began observing a spring festival and the new year during the month of Nisan, around the time of the March equinox. The early Roman calendar designated 1 March as the first day of the year. The calendar had just 10 months, beginning with March. That the new year once began with the month of March is still reflected in some of the names of the months. September through to December, the ninth through to the twelfth months of the Gregorian calendar, were originally positioned as the seventh through to the tenth months. (Septem is Latin for “seven”; octo, “eight”; novem, “nine”; and decem, “ten”) Roman mythology usually credits their second king Numa with the establishment of the two new months of Ianuarius and Februarius. These were first placed at the end of the year, but at some point came to be considered the first two months instead.
The January kalend (Latin: Kalendae Ianuariae), the start of the month of January, came to be celebrated as the new year at some point after it became the day for the inaugurating new consuls in 153 BC. Romans had long dated their years by these consulships, rather than sequentially, and making the kalends of January start the new year aligned this dating. Still, private and religious celebrations around the March new year continued for some time and there is no consensus on the question of the timing for 1 January’s new status. Once it became the new year, however, it became a time for family gatherings and celebrations. A series of disasters, notably including the failed rebellion of M. Aemilius Lepidus in 78 BC, established a superstition against allowing Rome’s market days to fall on the kalends of January and the pontiffs employed intercalation to avoid its occurrence.
Jordan Maxwell is a preeminent researcher and independent scholar in the field of occult, symbols, government, secret societies and religious philosophy. His interest in these and a wide range of subjects began as far back as 1959.He served for three and a half years as the Editor of Truth Seeker Magazine, America’s oldest Free thought journal, established in 1873. His work exploring the hidden foundations of western religions and secret societies have created enthusiastic responses from audiences around the world.
He has conducted dozens of intensive seminars and hosted his own radio talk shows. He guest starred on more than 600 radio shows, has written, produced and appeared in numerous television shows and documentaries.
One of his most memorable works, was three 2-hour specials for the CBS Television and the internationally acclaimed 5-part Ancient Mystery Series, devoted to ancient religions and their influence on world affairs today.