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#11804007 Nov 28, 2015 at 12:25 PM
15 Posts
From Laeran Dawnstrike! It's head-canon but a lovely addition to our elf RP, adds to our identity as a separate, ancient race.

Overview

The Thalassian Calendar is the general term for the system of reckoning used by the High Elves and Blood Elves; it remains the official calendar in Quel’Thalas, and despite living in regions where the King’s Calendar is the civil calendar the High Elves continue to use the Thalassian Calendar for calculation of important dates, festivals, and so on.

First promulgated several centuries after the Founding of Quel’Thalas, the Thalassian Calendar replaced the Elunian Calendar that was and remains the principal method of reckoning for the Kaldorei. The reform of the calendar occured primarily due to practical reasons; the Elunian Calendar is fairly difficult to calculate without appropriate astronomical instruments or almanacs, and given the limited resources of the Highborne exiles a simplification in the calendar was deemed a necessary prerequisite to accurate reckoning. However, there was also an important philosophical justification; the Elunian Calendar was (and still is) a religiously based calendar focusing around the winter solstice and the corresponding Lunar Festival. The new calendar would instead reflect the exiles’ newly adopted sun religion, focusing on the summer solstice and the solar cycle.

Unlike its predecessor which is a lunisolar calendar, the Thalassian calendar is purely solar and consists of twelve months of exactly thirty days, with the new year beginning on the summer solstice. The solstice, along with the two days preceding and succeeding it, are not regarded as part of a month but are instead counted as intercalary days, with a leap day added at the conclusion of the twelfth month every four years.

Months

The twelve months of the Thalassian Calendar and their rough King’s Calendar equivalent are as follows; however, the two calendars do not correspond exactly owing to the former’s basis around the summer solstice.

Intercalary Days: June 19 -23

Belorair (‘Sun-Month’) June 24 – July 22

Felo’nair (‘Hot Month’) July 23 – August 21

Culunair (‘Golden-Red Month’) August 22 – September 20

Quel’dair (‘High Month’) September 21 – October 20

Endal’dair (‘Wind-Month’) October 21 – November 19

Falorair (‘Chill Month’) November 20 – December 19

Elunair (‘Moon Month’) December 20 – January 19

Al’arair (‘Dawn Month’) January 20 – February 18

Elrend’air (‘River Month’) February 19 – March 20

Lore’nair (‘Blossom Month’) March 21 – April 19

Iserair (‘Green Month’) April 20 – May 19

Fin’alair (‘Last Month’) May 20 – June 18

Changes in the Calendar

While the Thalassian Calendar has remained largely unchanged since its creation, there are two key differences in the modern method of reckoning. The first change occured roughly six hundred years ago as part of a wider set of calendar reforms throughout the Eastern Kingdoms; the result of which was that the Thalassian Calendar adopted the twenty-four hour day rather than the previous ten-hour model (in exchange, the Arathorian calendar adopted the four-year intercalation method of the Thalassian calendar). The second change occured after the Third War, where rather than numbering years starting from the first year of the current monarch, years are numbered from the Founding of Quel’Thalas. As such, Year 1 of the present Thalassian Calendar is roughly equivalent to Year -6208 of the King’s Calendar or 6,831 years ago.

Festivals and Observances

Festival of the Sun: The Thalassian new year celebration, which takes place on the five (six on leap years) intercalary days between 30 Fin’alair and 1 Belorair. The first two or three days focus around remembrance and reflection of the past year, with a shift towards anticipating and celebrating the new year on the summer solstice and the two days after it.

Feast of the Crown: The Feast of the Crown marks the anniversary of the Foundation of Quel’Thalas and the proclamation of Dath’remar Sunstrider as King. Traditionally, the King would renew his coronation oath on this day followed by a public feast with a distribution of gifts to the citizenry of Silvermoon - in modern practice, friends and neighbours will have communal feasts with a eulogy spoken for Dath’remar followed by an exchange of gifts.

Days of Remembrance: The Days of Remembrance is a three day festival that takes place from 2 to 4 Quel’dair. Corresponding to the Autumnal Equinox, it is dedicated to the veneration of an elf’s ancestors.

Day of the Fallen: Occuring on 2 Falorair, the Day of the Fallen originally commemorated those slain during the Troll Wars; in recent years it also marks the Fall of Quel’Thalas during the Third War. Traditional observance entails fasting or some other form of abstinence, often for a week before the actual day.

Dawntide: Descended from the Lunar Festival, Dawntide varies in length spanning from the last new moon before the winter solstice to the first full moon after the solstice. It celebrates the point at which the days begin to lengthen and is a time of giving thanks that commemorates the family and encourages charity to the less forunate.

Garland Day: Garland Day is named as such because the symbol for the festival is a wreathe of flowers. Taking place on 1 Iserair, it marks the Vernal Equinox and celebrates the coming of spring and the continuation of the Elven people - in particular through the giving of gifts and treats to children and celebration of romantic love.
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