Thursday, 17 October 2013

Quarter Days (England)

The English quarter days (also observed in Wales and the Channel Islands) are:
Lady Day (25 March)
Midsummer Day (24 June)
Michaelmas (29 September)
Christmas (25 December)

Lady Day was also the first day of the year in British dominions (excluding Scotland) until 1752 (when it was harmonised with the Scottish practice of 1 January being New Year's Day). The British tax year still starts on 'Old' Lady Day (6 April under the Gregorian calendar corresponded to 25 March under the Julian calendar). The dates of the Quarter Days observed in northern England until the 18th century were the same as those in Scotland.

The cross-quarter days are four holidays falling in between the quarter days: Candlemas (2 February), May Day (1 May), Lammas (1 August), and All Hallows (1 November). The Scottish term days, which fulfil a similar role as days on which rents are paid, correspond more nearly to the cross-quarter days than to the English quarter days.

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