8 Ihe Calendars and Chronology ?
At the epoch 2769, 372 years later, in the earl/ years of the
Third Dynasty, and within a century of the construction of
by Augustus of the original Julian calendar of 45 B.C. which had been mis-
applied in operation. From the internal evidence it appears that Sosigenea
originally intended it to begin at the winter solstice with 5 epagomenal days
so that Jan. i should have been 5 days after the solstice. The proleptic result
of the revision by Augustus was to place Jan. i, 45 B.C., 7 days after the
solstice, and to scatter, or to leave scattered, the 5 epagomenal days through-
out the year. The Saints' days calendar of the Christian Churches preserves
more clearly the traces of the old Egyptian calendar. Examination shows an
organization with the solstice as the first epagomenal day, Christmas day as
the 4th epagomenal day (preserving here the calendric position of the Isis
festival) and Boxing day (St. Stephen's day) as the 5th epagomenal day.
The arrangement of the principal Saints' days may be expressed in terms of
a hypothetical Egyptian calendar, commencing at the winter solstice as follows:
Date in Gregorian
July 2 5
St. John Baptist
Even the divergences from the normal intervals are curiously reminiscent of
some of the slight shifts in the date of the Egyptian festivals which occurred
between 1541 B.C. and 200 B.C. They suggest that these saints' days were
introduced by the Church of Alexandria in order to supplant the Egyptian
festivals of the months.