My fantasy setting is on a wet and humid world of innumerable islands; many of which are quite mountainous.

With conditions ranging from Mediterranean to Tropical.

The culture here experience only two seasons Wet/Rainy and Dry. Their Calendar divides the year into two seasons.

Which in turn divides each season into three phase of Waxing, Apex and Waning, the beginning, middle and end of the season; each phase divides into months.

With mountain regions often being cooler than the low lands in reality.

I thought that the Mountain folk might experience different season, and develop a more earth like Calendar?

If the above/bolded not plausible then what would be?

  • Would the Mountain folk use the same Calendar system as the low landers?
  • Would the Mountain Folk experience a different enough condition from the low landers and most real worlds cultures to need a unique Calendar?
  • If the immediately above is true, what are mountain seasons and weather like?
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    $\begingroup$ Please narrow down to a single question. $\endgroup$
    – L.Dutch
    Commented Mar 11, 2020 at 12:46
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    $\begingroup$ We have 7 calendars in the world. They are the Gregorian, the Chinese, the Hebrew, the Islamic, the Persian, the Ethiopian and the Balinese Pawukon. $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 11, 2020 at 13:41
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    $\begingroup$ @SZCZERZOKŁY: Plus the Julian calendar used by some Orthodox churches... Ever wondered why Russians celebrate Christmas on January 7th? That's why. Plus the Revised Julian Calendar used by the rest of the Orthodox Churches. $\endgroup$
    – AlexP
    Commented Mar 11, 2020 at 13:58
  • $\begingroup$ @L.Dutch - Reinstate Monica Realistically would the moutnain folk experience difrent enough climate/seasons that they would divide the year into something other than what,dry and degrees there of. $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 19, 2020 at 2:15

2 Answers 2


The mountain folk use an older calendar.

The Julian calendar was introduced in the time of the Roman Empire and was adopted throughout the western world. In 1582 the Pope introduced a revised calendar called the Gregorian calendar, and over the ensuing centuries this calendar supplanted the older Julian calendar.

Except where it didn't. The Berbers in North Africa still use the old Julian calendar.


The current Berber calendar is a legacy of the Roman province of Mauretania Caesariensis and the Roman province of Africa, as it is a surviving form of the Julian calendar. The latter calendar was used in Europe before the adoption of the Gregorian calendar, with month names derived from Latin.

Berbers are to some degree set apart from the larger populations in their regions. They are the equivalent of your mountain people - an insular group who sticks to the old ways. Your mountain people use the old calendar of the empire that used to rule their area thousands of years ago, like the Berbers do.

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    $\begingroup$ "The Islamic calendar, a lunar calendar, is not suited for agriculture because it does not relate to seasonal cycles.[1] In other parts of the Islamic world either Iranian solar calendars, the Coptic calendar, the Rumi calendar, or other calendars based on the Julian calendar, were used before the introduction of the Gregorian calendar." This can also be quoted, as it prooves that it's quite common to use an older calender, despite a new one was promoted. $\endgroup$
    – Kepotx
    Commented Mar 11, 2020 at 14:38
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    $\begingroup$ Some Orthodox churches (for example, the Russian Orthodox Church) also continue to use the Julian calendar. That's why Christmas falls on January 7th in Russia. $\endgroup$
    – AlexP
    Commented Mar 11, 2020 at 14:40

Calendars are almost entirely social constructs. A calendar typically marks divisions of a solar year, so presuming that your planet goes around its sun in a manner that's observably consistent to both cultures, then their calendars would be of the same length. The smallest division would presumably by a day period, though on a tidally-locked planet, this might not be the case.

Between the cycles of years and days are seasons if your planet has an axial tilt, but only then. Two cultures would observe the same length of seasons, but wouldn't necessarily experience them the same (summer in the northern hemisphere is winter in the southern, and vice-versa).

Beyond seasons, the rest of the constructs are entirely artificial. The day of the year that's marked as the start of a year (presuming you have a convenient solar year divided into an even number of days; no leap years) would be different between calendars, as would the length of any other units like weeks (for us defined as a half-moon) or months (defined almost arbitrarily).

So use a basic framework to lay out your planet's solar and lunar cycles, then decide for yourself how the different societies observe them and count them.

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    $\begingroup$ There are two dimensions in the way a society used of a calendar: past (societal memory, history, etc - don't limit it only to distant past) and future (scheduling works or festivities or events). While I can sorta agree that for the 'past' side the calendar may be an artificial construct, I disagree it is the same for the 'future' dimension - a calendar that aligns better with the seasons of the place will serve better the community. True, the use of such calendars don't transfer well between communities having little in common, but that's exactly because they are no longer artificial. $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 13, 2020 at 1:19

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