Time & Calendar

Iranian Calendar

Iranian official calendar, regulate according to Solar year & Iranian months.21 March, equal 1 Farvardin, is beginning of Iranian New Year. Also in Iran, Lunar calendar announce officially. Lunar year is 10 days less than Solar year ,so days of performing religious rites, that adjust according Lunar calendar, each year is different from next & former years. Therefore it recommended to tourists that arrange their proper traveling time with related agency. Especially in Ramadan month that Muslim Iranian, are fasting and in Muharram are mournful, so these situations influence on daily & current activities   and some days in these two month is public holiday. Friday is official holiday.

The Iranian calendars or sometime Persian calendars are a succession of calendars invented or used for over two millennia in Greater Iran. One of the longest chronological records in human history, the Iranian calendar has been modified time and again during its history to suit administrative, climatic, and religious purposes.

The modern Iranian calendar (Solar Hejri) is now the official calendar in Iran and Afghanistan. It begins on the vernal equinox as determined by astronomical calculations for the Iran Standard Time meridian (52.5°E or GMT+3.5h).

This determination of starting moment is more accurate than the Gregorian calendar because it is synchronized with the vernal equinox year, but requires consulting an astronomical almanac. Its years are designated AP, short for Anno Persico.

The Iranian year usually begins within a day of 21 March of the Gregorian calendar. To find the corresponding year of the Gregorian calendar, add 621 or 622 (depending on the time of the year) to a Solar Hejri year.

On 21 February 1911, the second Persian parliament adopted as the official calendar of Iran the Jalālī solar calendar with months bearing the names of the twelve constellations of the zodiac and the years named for the animals of the duodecennial cycle; it remained in use until 1925. The present Iranian calendar was legally adopted on 31 March 1925, under the early Pahlavi dynasty. The law said that the first day of the year should be the first day of spring in “the true solar year”, “as it has been”. It also fixed the number of days in each month, which previously varied by year with the tropical zodiac. It revived the ancient Persian names, which are still used. It specified the origin of the calendar (Hegira of Muhammad from Mecca to Medina in 622 CE). It also deprecated the 12-year cycles of the Chinese-Uighur calendar which were not officially sanctioned but were commonly used.

The first six months (Farvardin–Shahrivar) have 31 days, the next five (Mehr–Bahman) have 30 days, and the last month (Esfand) has 29 days or 30 days in leap years. The reason the first six months have 31 days and the rest 30 may have to do with the fact that the sun moves slightly more slowly along the ecliptic in the northern spring and summer than in the northern autumn and winter (the time between the vernal equinox and the autumnal equinox is about 186 days and 10 hours, the opposite duration about 178 days, 20 hours).

The Solar Hejri calendar produces a five-year leap year interval after about every seven four-year leap year intervals. It usually follows a 33-year cycle with occasional interruptions by single 29-year or 37-year subcycles. By contrast, some less accurate predictive algorithms are suggestion based on confusion between average tropical year (365.2422 days, approximated with near 128-year cycles or 2820-year great cycles) and the mean interval between spring equinoxes (365.2424 days, approximated with a near 33-year cycle).

In 1976, Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi changed the origin of the calendar, using the birth of Cyrus as the first day, rather than the Hejra of Muhammad. Overnight, the year changed from 1355 to 2535. The change lasted till the Islamic Revolution in Iran, 1979; at which time the calendar was reverted back to Solar Hejri.

Iranian Month Names

Order Days Iranian Persian
Iranian-English Native Script
1 31 Farvardin فروردین
2 31 Ordibehesht اردیبهشت
3 31 Khordad خرداد
4 31 Tir تیر
5 31 Amordad امرداد
6 31 Shahrivar شهریور
7 30 Mehr مهر
8 30 Aban آبان
9 30 Azar آذر
10 30 Dei دی
11 30 Bahman بهمن
12 29/30 Esfand اسفند

The first day of the calendar year is also the day of the greatest festival of the year in Iran, Afghanistan and surrounding regions, called norooz (two morphemes: no (new) and rooz (day), meaning “new day”). The celebration is filled with many festivities and runs a course of 13 days. The last day of which is called siz-dah bedar (Literal translation-“13 to outdoor”)

Days of the week

In the Iranian calendar, every week begins on Saturday and ends on Friday. The names of the days of the week are as follows: shambe (natively spelled “shanbeh”), yekshambe, doshambe, seshambe, chæharshambe, panjshambe and jom’e (yek, do, se, chæhar, and panj are the Persian words for the numbers one through five). The name for Friday, jom’e, is Arabic (Persian). Jom’e is sometimes referred to by the native Persian name, adineh. In most Islamic countries, Friday is the weekly holiday.

Calculating the day of the week is easy, using an anchor date. One good such date is Sunday, 1 Farvardin 1372, which equals 21 March 1993. Assuming the 33-year cycle approximation, move back by one weekday to jump ahead by one 33-year cycle. Similarly, to jump back by one 33-year cycle, move ahead by one weekday.

As in the Gregorian calendar, dates move forward exactly one day of the week with each passing year, except if there is an intervening leap day when they move two days. The anchor date 1 Farvardin 1372 is chosen so that its 4th, 8th, …, 32nd anniversaries come immediately after leap days, yet the anchor date itself does not immediately follow a leap day.


Relationship with the zodiac signs

Each month of the current Iranian calendar corresponds to the 12 signs of the zodiac in western tropical astrology. The vernal equinox or first point of aries are taken to be the beginning of the solar year.

Month number Month name (Persian) Zodiac sign
1 Farvardin Aries
2 Ordibehesht Taurus
3 Khordad Gemini
4 Tir Cancer
5 Mordad Leo
6 Shahrivar Virgo
7 Mehr Libra
8 Aban Scorpio
9 Azar Sagittarius
10 Dey Capricorn
11 Bahman Aquarius
12 Esfand Pisces

Public holidays and anniversaries

There are 25 holidays. Dates for anniversaries are based on the Persian calendar.

Holidays & Anniversaries in 1390 (21 March 2011 – 19 March 2012) in Iran
Date English name Local name Comments
21–24 March Iranian New Year Nowruz of ancient Iranian origin
1 April Islamic Republic Day Ruz-e Jumhuri-ye Eslami Proclamation of the Islamic Republic on 1 April 1979
2 April Sizdah Bedar (Nature Day) Sizdah Bedar 13th day after the new year, end of festivities for Nowruz
7 May Martyrdom of Fatima Shahdat-e Hazrat-e Fateme 29 August 632
4 June Anniversary of the passing of Ruhollah Khomeini Dargozasht-e Emam Khomeini 4 June 1989
5 June Anniversary of the uprising against the Shah Ghiyam-e Panzdah-e Khordad 6 June 1963
16 June Anniversary of Imam Ali Milad-e Emam Ali 11 October 599
30 June Mission of Muhammad Be’sat Payambar 9 July 609
17 July Anniversary of Imam Mahdi Milad-e Emam Zaman, roz-e mostasafin 2 August 869
21 August Martyrdom of Imam Ali Shahadat-e Emam Ali 31 January 661
31 August End of Ramadan Eid-e-Fitr
24 September Martyrdom of Imam Sadeq Shahadat-e Emam Sadeq 17 December 765
7 November Eid-e-Qorban
15 November Eid-e Ghadir 21 March 632
5 December Tasoa-ye Hosseini 12 October 680
6 December Martyrdom of Imam Hossein Ashura 13 October 680
14 January Arbaïn (40th day after Ashura) Arba’in-e Hosseini 22 November 680
22 January Demise of Muhammad and Martyrdom of Imam Hassan 28 May 632 – 30 March 670
24 January Martyrdom of Imam Reza 9 September 818
10 February Anniversary of Muhammad and Anniversary of Imam Sadeq 11 May 570 – 24 April 702
11 February Iranian revolution Day 22 Bahman 11 February 1979
19 March Nationalization of the oil industries Nowruz 20 March 1951