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Calendar (New Style) Act 1750

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Calendar (New Style) Act 1750

1750 CHAPTER 23 24 Geo 2

F1An Act for regulating the Commencement of the Year, and for correcting the Calendar now in use.

Whereas the legal supputation of the year of our Lord in England, according to which the year beginneth on the twenty-fifth day of March, hath been found by experience to be attended with divers inconveniences, not only as it differs from the usage of neighbouring nations, but also from the legal method of computation in Scotland, and from the common usage throughout the whole kingdom, and thereby frequent mistakes are occasioned in the dates of deeds and other writings, and disputes arise therefrom: And whereas the calendar now in use throughout all his Majesty’s British dominions, commonly called The Julian Calendar, hath been discovered to be erroneous, by means whereof the vernal or spring equinox, which at the time of the general council of Nice in the year of our Lord three hundred and twenty-five happened on or about the twenty-first day of March, now happens on the ninth or tenth day of the same month; and the said error is still increasing, and if not remedied would in process of time occasion the several equinoxes and solstices to fall at very different times in the civil year from what they formerly did, which might tend to mislead persons ignorant of the said alteration: And whereas a method of correcting the calendar in such manner as that the equinoxes and solstices may for the future fall nearly on the same nominal days on which the same happened at the time of the said general council hath been received and established, and is now generally practised by almost all other nations of Europe: And whereas it will be of general convenience to merchants and other persons corresponding with other nations and countries, and tend to prevent mistakes and disputes in or concerning the dates of letters and accounts, if the like correction be received and established in his Majesty’s dominions:

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Amendments (Textual)

F1Act repealed in so far as it requires the observance of January 30, May 29, October 23 and November 5 by the Act 22 Vict. c. 2

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C1Short title given by Short Titles Act 1896 (c. 14)

C2Act amended (prosp.) by Easter Act 1928 (c. 35), ss. 1, 2(2)

C3Act amended by 25 Geo. 2. c. 30.

[1.] The old supputation of the year not to be made use of after Dec. 1751. Year to commence for the future on 1 Jan.The days to be numbered as now until 2d Sept. 1752; and the day following to be accounted 14 Sept. omitting 11 days. Hilary and Michaelmas terms, and all courts to be held on the same nominal days. Courts held with fairs or marts excepted.E+W+S

In and throughout all his Majesty’s dominions and countries in Europe, Asia, Africa, and America, belonging or subject to the crown of Great Britain, the said supputation, according to which the year of our Lord beginneth on the twenty-fifth day of March, shall not be made use of from and after the last day of December one thousand seven hundred and fifty-one; and that the first day of January next following the said last day of December shall be reckoned, taken, deemed, and accounted to be the first of the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and fifty-two; and the first day of January which shall happen next after the said first day of January one thousand seven hundred and fifty-two shall be reckoned, taken, deemed, and accounted to be the first day of the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and fifty-three; and so on from time to time the first day of January in every year which shall happen in time to come shall be reckoned, taken, deemed, and accounted to be the first day of the year, and that each new year shall accordingly commence and begin to be reckoned from the first day of every such month of January next preceding the twenty-fifth day of March on which such year would according to the present supputation have begun or commenced; and that from and after the said first day of January one thousand seven hundred and fifty-two the several days of each month shall go on, and be reckoned and numbered in the same order, and the feast of Easter and other moveable feasts thereon depending shall be ascertained according to the same method, as they now are, until the second day of September in the said year one thousand seven hundred and fifty-two inclusive; and that the natural day next immediately following the said second day of September shall be called, reckoned, and accounted to be the fourteenth day of September, omitting for that time only the eleven intermediate nominal days of the common calendar; and that the several natural days which shall follow and succeed next after the said fourteenth day of September shall be respectively called, reckoned, and numbered forwards in numerical order from the said fourteenth day of September, according to the order and succession of days now used in the present calendar; and that all acts, deeds, writings, notes, and other instruments, of what nature or kind soever, whether ecclesiastical or civil, publick or private, which shall be made, executed, or signed upon or after the said first day of January one thousand seven hundred and fifty-two, shall bear date according to the said new method of supputation; and that the two fixed terms of Saint Hilary and Saint Michael, in England, and the courts of great sessions in the counties palatine and in Wales, and also the courts of general quarter sessions and general sessions of the peace, and all other courts, of what nature or kind soever, whether civil, criminal, or ecclesiastical, and all meetings and assemblies of any bodies politick or corporate, either for the election of any officers or members thereof, or for any such officers entering upon the execution of their respective offices, or for any other purpose whatsoever, which by any law, statute, charter, custom, or usage within this kingdom, or within any other the dominions or countries subject or belonging to the crown of Great Britain, are to be holden and kept on any fixed or certain day of any month, or on any day depending upon the beginning or any certain day of any month (except such courts as are usually holden or kept with any fairs or marts), shall from time to time, from and after the said second day of September, be holden and kept upon or according to the same respective nominal days and times whereon or according to which the same are now to be holden, but which shall be computed according to the said new method of numbering and reckoning the days of the calendar as aforesaid, that is to say, eleven days sooner than the respective days whereon the same are now holden and kept, any law, statute, charter, custom, or usage to the contrary thereof in anywise notwithstanding.

2 Hundredth years, except every fourth hundred, to be common years of 365 days. Years bissextile of 366 days.E+W+S

And for the continuing and preserving the calendar or method of reckoning, and computing the days of the year in the same regular course, as near as may be, in all times coming, the several years of our Lord one thousand eight hundred, one thousand nine hundred, two thousand one hundred, two thousand two hundred, two thousand three hundred, or any other hundredth years of our Lord which shall happen in time to come, except only every fourth hundredth year of our Lord, whereof the year of our Lord two thousand shall be the first, shall not be esteemed or taken to be bissextile or leap years, but shall be taken to be common years consisting of three hundred and sixty-five days, and no more; and that the years of our Lord two thousand, two thousand four hundred, two thousand eight hundred, and every other fourth hundredth year of our Lord from the said year of our Lord two thousand inclusive, and also all other years of our Lord which by the present supputation are esteemed to be bissextile or leap years, shall for the future and in all times to come be esteemed and taken to be bissextile or leap years, consisting of three hundred and sixty-six days, in the same sort and manner as is now used with respect to every fourth year of our Lord.

3 Easter and the other moveable feasts to be observed according to the new calendar, tables and rules. Feast and fasts, etc. to be according to the new calendar.E+W+S

And whereas according to the rule prefixed to the Book of Common Prayer of the Church of England Easter-Day is always the first Sunday after the first full moon which happens next after the one and twentieth day of March, and if the full moon happens upon a Sunday Easter-Day is the Sunday after, which rule was made in conformity to the decree of the said general Council of Nice for the celebration of the said feast of Easter: And whereas the method of computing the full moons now used in the Church of England, and according to which the table to find Easter for ever, prefixed to the said Book of Common Prayer is formed, is by process of time become considerably erroneous: And whereas a calendar, and also certain tables and rules for the fixing the true time of the celebration of the said feast of Easter, and the finding the times of the full moons on which the same dependeth, so as the same shall agree as nearly as may be with the decree of the said general council and also with the practice of foreign countries, have been prepared, and are hereunto annexed: the said feast of Easter or any of the moveable feasts thereon depending, shall from and after the said second day of September be no longer kept or observed in England, or in any other the dominions or countries subject or belonging to the crown of Great Britain, according to the said method of supputation now used, or the said table prefixed to the said Book of Common Prayer; and that the said table, and also the column of golden numbers as they are now prefixed to the respective days of the month in the said calendar, shall be left out in all future editions of the said Book of Common Prayer; and that the said new calendar, tables, and rules hereunto annexed shall be prefixed to all such future editions of the said book, in the room and stead thereof; and that from and after the said second day of September all and every the fixed feast-days, holy days, and fast-days which are now kept and observed by the Church of England, and also the several solemn days of thanksgiving, and of fasting and humiliation, which by virtue of any Act of Parliament now in being are from time to time to be kept and observed shall be kept and observed on the respective days marked for the celebration of the same in the said new calendar, that is to say, on the same respective nominal days on which the same are now kept and observed, but which, according to the alteration by this Act intended to be made as aforesaid, will happen eleven days sooner than the same now do; and that the said feast of Easter, and all other moveable feasts thereon depending, shall from time to time be observed and celebrated according to the said new calendar, tables, and rules hereunto annexed, in England, and in all the dominions and countries aforesaid wherein the liturgy of the Church of England now is or hereafter shall be used; and that the two moveable terms of Easter and Trinity, and all courts, of what nature or kind soever, and all meetings and assemblies of any bodies politick or corporate, and all markets, fairs, and marts, and courts thereunto belonging, which, by any law statute, charter, custom, or usage are appointed, used, or accustomed to be holden and kept at any moveable time or times depending upon the time of Easter, or any other such moveable feast as aforesaid, shall from time to time, from and after the said second day of September, be holden and kept on such days and times whereon the same shall respectively happen or fall, according to the happening or falling of the said feast of Easter or such other moveable feasts as aforesaid, to be computed according to the said new calendar, tables, and rules.

4 Courts of Session and Exchequer in Scotland, and markets, fairs, and marts, to be held upon the same natural days. E+W+S

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F2 the holding and keeping of all markets, fairs, and marts, whether for the sale of goods or cattle, or for the hiring of servants, or for any other purpose, which are either fixed to certain nominal days of the month, or depending upon the beginning or any certain day of any month, and all courts incident or belonging to or usually holden or kept with any such fairs or marts, fixed to such certain times as aforesaid, shall not from and after the said second day of September be continued upon or according to the nominal days of the month, or the time of the beginning of any month, to be computed according to the said new calendar, but that from and after the said second of September. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F2 all such markets, fairs and marts as aforesaid, and all courts incident or belonging thereto, shall be holden and kept upon or according to the same natural days upon or according to which the same should have been so kept or holden in case this Act had not been made, that is to say, eleven days later than the same would have happened, according to the nominal days of the said new supputation of time by which the commencement of each month and the nominal days thereof are anticipated or brought forward by the space of eleven days any thing in this Act contained to the contrary thereof in anywise notwithstanding.

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Amendments (Textual)

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C4Jurisdiction of Court of Exchequer now exercisable by Court of Session: Exchequer Court (Scotland) Act 1856 (c. 56), s. 1

5The times for opening and inclosing of commons, not altered.E+W+S

And whereas, according to divers customs, prescriptions, and usages in certain places within this kingdom, certain lands and grounds are, on particular nominal days and times in the year, to be opened for common of pasture and other purposes, and at other times the owners and occupiers of such lands and grounds have a right to inclose or shut up the same for their own private use, and there is in many other instances a temporary and distinct property and right vested in different persons in and to many such lands and grounds, according to certain nominal days and times in the year: And whereas the anticipating or bringing forward the said nominal days and times by the space of eleven days, according to the said new method of supputation, might be attended with many inconveniences: nothing in this Act contained shall extend or be construed to extend to accelerate or anticipate the days or times for the opening, inclosing, or shutting up any such lands or grounds as aforesaid, or the days or times on which any such temporary or distinct property or right in or to any such lands or grounds as aforesaid is to commence, but that all such lands and grounds as aforesaid shall, from and after the said second day of September, be from time to time respectively opened, inclosed or shut up, and such temporary and distinct property and right in and to such lands and grounds as aforesaid shall commence and begin, upon the same natural days and times on which the same should have been so respectively opened, inclosed, or shut up, or would have commenced or begun, in case this Act had not been made, that is to say, eleven days later than the same would have happened, according to the said new account and supputation of time so to begin on the said fourteenth day of September as aforesaid.

6X1Times of payment of rents, annuities, &c. or of delivery of goods, commencement or expiration of leases, &c. or of attaining the age of 21 years, &c. not alteredE+W+S

Provided also, nothing in this present Act contained shall extend or be construed to extend to accelerate or anticipate the time of payment of any rent or rents, . . . F3, or sum or sums of money whatsoever which shall become payable by virtue or in consequence of any custom, usage, lease, deed, writing, bond, note, contract, or other agreement whatsoever, now subsisting, or which shall be made, signed, sealed, or entered into at any time before the said fourteenth day of September, or which shall become payable by virtue of an Act or Acts of Parliament now in force, or which shall be made before the said fourteenth day of September, or the time of doing any matter or thing directed or required by any such Act or Acts of Parliament to be done in relation thereto; . . . F3; or the time of the commencement, expiration, or determination of any lease or demise of any lands, tenements, or hereditaments, or of any other contract or agreement whatsoever; or of the accepting, surrendering, or delivering up the possession of any such lands, tenements, or hereditaments; or the commencement, expiration, or determination of any . . . F3 rent; or of any grant for any term of years, of what nature or kind soever, by virtue or in consequence of any such deed, writing, contract, or agreement; . . . F3; but that all and every such rent and rents, . . . F3, sum and sums of money, and the interest thereof, shall remain and continue to be due and payable, . . . F3; and the said leases and demises of all such lands, tenements, and hereditaments, and the said contracts and agreements, shall be deemed to commence, expire, and determine, and the said lands, tenements, and hereditaments shall be accepted, surrendered, and delivered up, and the said rents . . . F3, and grants for any term of years, shall commence, cease and determine, at and upon the same respective natural days and times as the same should and ought to have been payable or made or would have happened in case this Act had not been made; and that no further or other sum shall be paid or payable for the interest of any sum of money whatsoever than such interest shall amount unto for the true number of natural days for which the principal sum bearing such interest shall continue due and unpaid; . . . F3; any thing herein before contained to the contrary thereof in anywise notwithstanding.

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X1Unreliable marginal note.

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