At the start of a new year many people make new years resolutions, to improve themselves as a person. As it is January, I thought I would think a bit about why we celebrate new years and what it means to people. 

New year was not always celebrated on the 1st January and in some places it still is not. Ancient Mesopotamians celebrated a 12-day long new year festival of Akitu in the Vernal equinox, which falls on March 20 this year. The Greeks celebrated their new year around the winter solstice which is the 20th December. Egyptians celebrated on the 20th July. In Roman times, March marked the beginning of the calendar and the new year.

46B.C was when Julius Caesar created the Julian calendar, this set the new year to the 1st January.  Even though there was now a calendar, new years celebrations still drifted back and forth even being on Christmas Day at one point.

In 1582, the Gregorian calendar was introduced by Pope Gregory XIII. This was an attempt at making the calendar stick to certain dates and respect the seasons. This was different to the Julian calendar because the Julian calendar had a few extra leap years then were necessary.

For many people, a new year signals a fresh start and a chance to make the new year better than the last year. New years celebrations are often going on throughout the night on the 31st December, setting people up for the new year. Happy New Year to everyone!