Old Lady Day

On this day in England they don’t give up their seats to wizened ladies with blue hair, but they do begin a new tax year.

On April 6??

It all goes back to the switch from “Annunciation style” to “Circumcision style,” believe it or not (also known less biologically as “old style” and “new style”). For centuries, the British year began on March 25, or “Lady Day,” when Jesus was theoretically conceived. In 1752 the Gregorian calendar changed New Year’s Day to January 1, when he was theoretically circumcised, and added 11 days to catch up to the solar year (in 1800, because of leap year complications, they had to add one more).

This was all quite confusing for tax collecting as well as calendar makers, as one might imagine. To keep the tax year a year long, they had to add 11 days to Lady Day, and one more in 1800. “Old Lady Day,” then, is the old March 25.

It makes one wonder how the British tax collectors feel about abortion.

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