How did the whole world accept one calendar and time standard?


How did the whole world accept one calendar and time standard?

In: 1

Trade and Globalization.

I wont get into the history of it all, but it started with international trade. Take our pick: the land route of the Silk Road, the vibrant Indian ocean trade, or the treacherous Manila-Acapulco Galleon trade. All of these routes took months if not years to complete, and even then, record keeping was a thing. So they needed a system to keep track of things: when they got it, when they sold it, when it would spoil, when they left port, prediction of when they would arrive, and a myriad other things. Eventually, other cultures just adopted the system used by the traders instead of converting it to their own local calendar/time. Eventually we just adopted a single calendar and standard time because of trade and technology.

Catholic Europe accepted the Julian and later Gregorian calendars because of papal authority. The pope was more than just the guy in the fancy hat, he was the literal Earthly embodiment of the Church, and his word was sacrosanct, so listening to him say “use this calendar” was natural. Protestant and Orthodox Europe accepted the Gregorian calendar because it was more accurate than the Julian calendar. The rest of the world accepted the Gregorian calendar because Europe was either able to conquer them (and impose the calendar by force) or were economically dominated by the Europeans, meaning they just had to use their timekeeping to do business.

International trade, when you need to know what time and date a ship is going to arrive so you can schedule people to offload the cargo you need an international method of describing it.

You’ve had several good answers, so I won’t go into that. But your assumption is wrong. The whole world didn’t accept one calendar. There are still many different calendars used today. The Gregorian calendar is by far the most used tho, and some countries with their own calendar system also use the Gregorian calendar for international affairs.

In Ethiopia, it’s officially 2015 right now.