Archaic & Redundant Dating Systems

A common practice of paranormal investigators and mediums is to attempt to get a ghost/spirit to give not only their name, but their date of birth and/or death. This is all well and good but can prove to be frustrating or ineffectual if one is not familiar with older systems for dating. It can also lead to inaccurate evidence. Those who do not possess a good grounding in history tend to make the mistake of believing that people always reckoned dates in the same form that we use in modern times, ie… 14 November 2006. This is not the case. From the 12th century to the 18th century people would have been more familiar with the use of Regnal years, Roman Calends and Saint’s Days/Religious Festivals for recording and remembering dates.

An example of a Regnal year would be: 12th June, 5 Henry V – Which means on the 12th day of June in the 5th year (1417) of the reign of King Henry V.

An example of using the Roman dating system: The Ides of March would refer to the 15th day of March.

An example of using Saint’s Days/Religious Festivals for dating: The day of the Translation of St. Thomas the Martyr in the 46th year of Henry III – This particular feast day of St. Thomas the Martyr falls on 7 July. The 46th year of Henry III is from 28 October 1261 to 27 October 1262, which tells us that this feast day occurred on 7 July 1262, in the 46th year of the reign of Henry III.

If you are communicating with a ghost/spirit and seem to be getting nowhere when it comes to getting a birth or death date, try asking them in a date format they would be familiar with. We cannot assume that because they have “passed over” they are automatically familiar with our current system of dating. It is also possible that they did not know when they were born or died, especially those of the lower or peasant classes, who would have had little or no use for knowing the date or even the year. What is important to us in our modern age would not have held the same importance for them. It is doubtful if many people in certain eras even celebrated or recognised birthdays as a day any different or more special than another.

Using these older dating system could also be beneficial in determining whether or not someone’s claims of being a psychic are true. A psychic does not need to know or understand these dating systems in order to pick them up from a ghost/spirit who is responding to a question about dates.

To read more in-depth information about these archaic dating systems please visit these sites:

Making Sense of Dates in Colonial America
Medieval Genealogy
English Regnal Years
The University of Nottingham

Article written by Cindy Nunn