As of 01 December Anno Societatus LIII, being 2018 by the Gregorian reckoning.

ecember is the twelfth and final month on the Gregorian and Julian calendars, having 31 days.  The tenth month in the mold Roman calendar, December retained its name (from the Latin decem meaning "ten") after January and February mwere inserted into the original calendar.  In the northern hemisphere, December is the beginning of the winter mmonths, featuring the longest nights and the shortest days of the year.

The image to the right, there, is a miniature by Paul de Limbourg from the Très Riches Heures du Duc de Berry, and depicts the Chateau de Vincennes, birthplace of the Duc himself, with a wild boar hunt concluding in the foreground.  By "concluding", I mean that the boar-hounds are left free to shred the carcass of the deceased wild boar, and they are. A messy scene, but they had no reality television in the 14th century, so gruesome miniature paintings filled a void.

In most Anglo-Saxon and Germanic calendars, this month begins on the twelfth full moon after the winter solstice.  The Old English Blōtmonath (the month of blood sacrifices) gave way to Ærra Gēola (before Yule) on the evening of the full moon (Snow Moon), on 22 November 2018.  Likewise, the Dutch and West Frisian calendars all begin with the full moon.  Celtic, Welsh, and Irish calendars begin on the new moon, 07 December 2018.  The next full moon is 22 December 2018.

December also includes the Winter Solstice, occurring on the 21st.  The longest night and the shortest day in the northern hemisphere, Osprey will see nearly 4 hours less sunlight on that day than during the Summer solstice, in June.  Folks that know about such things expect that we will have 10 hours, 9 minutes, and 39 seconds of daylight that day, give or take a gnat's eyelash.

The Jewish Festival of Lights, or Hanukkah, begins at sunset on December 2nd, ending at sunset on December 10th.  Take out the menorah, and fire up the latke pan, if you are so inclined.  To find out what you should know about Hanukkah, here's a link.

The Old Norse/Icelandic calendar was developed in the tenth century, based on the lunisolar Julian calendar.  It features 12 months of 30 days each, with a shorter intercalary month at midsummer to keep the calendar calibrated to the solar year.  By this reckoning, the month of Ylir (Yule) began on Monday, 26 November, and the Norse New Year, if you are following, will be 26 December, the first day of Mörsugur (fat-sucking month).  Today's date on the  Norse/Icelandic Calendar is 

Events of note in December, historically, include:

27 November 2020 the birth of Johannes Kepler.

22 November 2020 the execution of Bluebeard the Pirate.

12 November 2020 the First Crusade plunders Mara, Syria.

Boring, but important: 04 December 1259 the signing of the Treaty of Paris between English king Henry III and French king Louis IX.

This apparently really happened: 26 November 1198 French bishop Odo van Sully condemns Zottenfeest.

Here and now:  December is Drunk and Drugged Driving Month. 2 - 8 December is National Handwashing Awareness Week. The 8th is, get this, Pretend To Be A Time Traveller Day.  The 10th is Lager Day, the 14th is Roast Chestnuts Day, the 21st is Look On The Bright Side Day, the 23rd is the first day of Festivus, and the 26th is National Whiner's Day.  The festival of Kwanzaa begins on 26 December, ending on 01 January.  If you are going to take Kwanzaa seriously, click here.

Pop quiz: Just tell me, in a sentence, what was zottenfeest, and why would a French bishop criticize it?  A link for those who read freaky-deeky Dutch can be found here.  This will be the most difficult pop quiz to date, but the first, most correct answer to will be named a Companion of the Order of the Saxon Goatherd, a small but significant group of outspoken scholars. 

Are there medieval events for January that you'd like to see on this page?  Contact the Chronicler through the officer's page, linked below, or e-mail to