Friday, February 29, 2008

Leap Year Postcards Part 4

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Our fourth and last discussion on Leap Year expands on the math in the first with a note on the leap year rule for century years. The reason century years must be divisible by 400 instead of just 4 is intended to rid the calendar of the annual excess of 11 minutes and 14 seconds. This rule eliminates leap years three times every 400 years and that gets the timing close enough for government work resulting in the calendar year and solar year off about half a minute annually. At that rate, it will take 3,300 years for the calendar year and solar year to be one day apart. In typical government fashion, we have managed to kick the can down the road and some of our ancestors can worry about it if they still live on earth then.

The last two postcards present the tough side and the soft side of Leap Year traditions. The first post card is a 1912 version and be sure to notice the red underlining in the word "MatriMONY".

The second postcard seems to show the boy more apprehensive than fearful. Be sure to check out all of the postcards on my website at Moody's Postcards.

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