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Culture 9

The calendar of the Syriacs is based on life in and around the church. Therefore, you will find many dates that are marked as religious festivals or dedicated to Saints and dates, which are marked as fasting days. The Syriac Orthodox Church, like other Orthodox churches, still uses a calendar introduced by Julius Caesar in 46 BC, in which the year consisted of 365 days, every fourth year having 366 days. Historically, the church calendar is also based on pre-Christian cultural traditions of the region.

The saying ḥa b oḏar bëḥto b qeno indicates a seasonal change: As soon as it is the first of March you will see the first egg in the (bird’s) nest.