Home > Calendar > Leap Year in the Bahá'í Calendar

Leap Year in the Bahá'í Calendar

The Bahá'í leap year occurs when five extra days, instead of four, are added between the last two months of the calendar. This usually happens every four years.

Lotus Temple, Bahai house of worship in New Delhi, India.

The Baha'i temple in New Delhi, India.

The Baha'i temple in New Delhi, India. It is also known as the Lotus Temple.

saiko3p©bigstockphoto.com

Common years in the Bahá'í calendar have four extra – or intercalary – days between the last two months of the year. This period is known as Ayyám-i-Há.

Leap Day: February 29

Realigned With Equinox

In 2015, the Universal House of Justice, the international governing body of the Bahá'í faith, passed new rules governing leap years. Now the number of intercalary days added to the calendar depend on the timing of the Vernal Equinox.

When is Ayyám-i-Há?

Ayyám-i-Há usually occurs between February 25 and March 1 in the Gregorian calendar. In 2016, it will last from February 26 to February 29.

Celebrating God's Love

The days of Ayyám-i-Há have special significance in the Bahá'í faith. It is a festival that encourages members of the faith to celebrate God and devote themselves to charity and giving. The end of the period marks the beginning of the Nineteen Day Fast, which ends on Nowruz (also spelled Nauroz or Naw-Rúz), the first day of the Bahá'í New Year.

19 Months in a Year

In the Bahá'í Calendar, which is a solar calendar, a year is 361 days long, several days shorter than an actual tropical year. It is divided into 19 months with 19 days each. Four or five intercalary days are added between the last two months of the year in order to synchronize the Bahá'í year with the solar year.

Before 2015, the calendar was locked with the Gregorian calendar, so that the first day of the year was always on March 21. New rules took effect on March 20, 2015, which uncoupled the two calendars. Now, the first day of the Bahá'í year falls on the day of the March Equinox.

Topics: Leap Year, Calendar, Seasons

Create Calendar With Holidays

Advertising

Astronomical Season Calculator


You might also like

A Year Is Never 365 Days

The definition of a tropical year, also known as a solar year, astronomical year, or equinoctial year, is the time it takes the Earth to complete a full orbit around the Sun, and it is approximately 365.242189 days long. more

What Is a Leap Year?

A leap year has 366 days, as opposed to a common year, which has 365. Nearly every four years is a Leap Year, and we add a leap day, an extra day on February 29. more

Chinese Leap Month

Instead of adding one leap day on February 29 nearly every four years, the Chinese add a leap month every 3 years to keep their calendar in line with the Earth's rotation. more

The Church of St. George in Lalibela, Ethiopia.

The Ethiopian Leap Year

A leap year occurs every 4 years in the Ethiopian calendar when one extra day is added at the end of the year. more