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Old Aug 22 2007, 09:32 AM   #1
Gidget2
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Question Pernese Calendar

I was just wondering about Pern and it's time structure.

How long is a Pernese year/Turn? How long are their months? How many months are there in a Turn? I know that there are 3 days at TurnOver that seem to exist outside of the usual month structure as we know it.

I seem to recall references such as "third month of the 9th Pass", but at what point does the first month start? The first month after TurnOver of the year a Pass is due to start? And what time of year is TurnOver? Is it at the winter solstice or the spring equinox?

I can't remember what prompted me to start thinking about this, but I soon realised that I didn't know any of the answers!
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Old Aug 22 2007, 10:54 AM   #2
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Default Re: Pernese Calendar

It's a tricky question to answer, because Anne changed it part way through the series.

According to the DLG, Pern has a year lasting 362 days, with a leap year every 6 Turns. Events in Moreta strongly suggest the Turn is broken into 12 months lasting 30 days apiece; the two extra days are added in at Turn's End for celebrations (re: DE/RSR). The UK editions of Dragonsdawn say that there are 13 months lasting 28 days (which gives 364 days per year), but this doesn't match what's said in Moreta, and it post-dates many of the books which were probably also written with a 12 month calendar in mind.

In the Northern Hemisphere, the Winter Solstice is the first day of the year, 1.1; Spring Equinox is 4.1; Summer Solstice is 7.1; and Autumn Equinox is 10.1. The seasons follow the solstices/equinoxes (i.e. winter is from 1.1 until 3.30).

In the Southern Hemisphere, Turnover is at the summer solstice instead.
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Old Aug 22 2007, 11:05 AM   #3
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Default Re: Pernese Calendar

Thanks for that, Cheryl!! (And darn pesky American way of writing dates as month:day instead of the much more sensible UK way if day:month LOL)
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Old Nov 14 2011, 02:11 AM   #4
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Default Re: Pernese Calendar

Ha! Glad I found what I was looking for. (Really didn't want to start a new thread if it wasn't necessary!)

I'm researching Pern's seasons because I'm -attempting- to create a calendar of sorts for personal reference. One with every day of the year. It would be nice, when simulating an RP storyline to flip to the day and read my notes about the possible weather, seasonal activities, dragonic development... it will make a realistic simulation of Pernese life much less tedious to depict. Being a busy person, I won't have to wrack my brain to think of ideas, the inspirational material will be handy and relevant!

Now that I know when each season begins and how long they last... does anyone feel up to helping me gather some references for aspects of life that pertain to the seasons? Aside from Turn's End are there other gathers?? Wish I had access to the books but I can't recall at the moment. How about the harvesting and production of various herbs, medecines, and foods? This might be a big question, and I don't expect anybody to scramble but if anyone has an idea or a helpful link they are inspired to share I'd be so very very grateful!!
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Old Nov 14 2011, 10:36 AM   #5
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Default Re: Pernese Calendar

Gathers are described in Dragonsinger as occuring (at least during a Pass) pretty much whenever a restday falls on a Thread-free day. How large these are depends on how many merchants are in the area and whether others are free to travel in from other areas to participate. Entertainment would be limited by tje number and variety of Harpers in the area - obviously, Fort Hold would have a lot more with the Harper Hall handy, but most Holds probably aren't hosting a lot of dances and performances at every gather. Similarly, the really massive gathers along the lines of those in Moreta and the wedding celebration in Dragonquest don't seem to happen as frequently and would be most common around the start and end of a Pass, when Threadfall is happening less often and travel would be a little easier (and safer). In the middle of the Pass, with Thread falling much more frequently, there would be primarily 'market day' type gathers - lots of trading with a less festive environment - occuring, maybe once a month or so, with a bigger gather happening once or twice a year.
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Old Nov 14 2011, 02:08 PM   #6
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Default Re: Pernese Calendar

Thank you so much semantre! That deffinitely breaks it down in a realistic way. I suppose it's common sense, but you explained it so well!

What about numbweed and the harvest of other herbs/plants? I know there are mentionings of it's production in the books, but I can't recall which ones. Suppose I could find quotes using google books, like I did for dragon anatomy references! ;D Another thing I suppose I could do i suse the pern encyclopedia/another source to find plants and if they are infact real herbs brought over from Earth I can find more info about growing and harvesting them. It's probably time for me to buy a DLG just for reference's sake. lol

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Old Nov 14 2011, 02:20 PM   #7
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Default Re: Pernese Calendar

Check the tail end of Moreta for harvesting of Needlethorn, and Dragondrums and Dragonquest for numbweed.
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Old Nov 14 2011, 04:52 PM   #8
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Default Re: Pernese Calendar

Thanks for pointing me in the right direction! Yes, I recall that scene in Moreta, but I've deffinitely forgotten the details. Google books might have those scenes, and if not, I should get on with re-obtaining this series anyway.

When I've got something to show for this Pernese Seasons project I'll share it, and welcome critiques... Am I mistaken or is there really no specific document describing Pernese seasons in detail on the web? Does the DLG go into it much?
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Old Nov 14 2011, 07:25 PM   #9
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Default Re: Pernese Calendar

Also as far as Gathers go, there are the "opportunistic" ones like in DSi, and then there are the bigger ones that are planned in advance, like the one at Ruatha in Moreta and the big Spring Festival that is mentioned in DSi. The planned ones will be bigger because people can plan in advance to travel to them.
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