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Freedom with the bonnet by Augustin Dupré (Year IV / 1795-1796)
The republican calendar was officially adopted on October 24, 1793, that is to say more than one year after the advent of the First Republic (thus no Year I !), after a long debate enters the mathematicians Romme and Monge, the poets Chénier and Fabre d' Eglantine and the painter David. The republican calendar is one of the great reforms undertaken by the national Convention which, just like the metric system, aimed at reforming the society until in its references to time and space. Against the superstition and fanaticism, Sunday, the saints, the Christian festivals were abolished in the name of the Reason, science, nature, poetry, the ideology and the Utopia. 

The work of the mathematicians: creation of an equal month division (12 months, 30 days), a decimal number system of the decades and hours. The year begins during the day from the autumnal equinox. 

The work of the poets: one gives to the days the names of plants, domestic animals and tools. The months rhyme three by three, according to the " sonority " of the seasons. 

It should be noted that the year starts at the birthday day of the abolition of the royalty and that it ends in the festival of the "sans-culottides " (complementary days). 

One should not confuse the datings of the republican calendar with the mention, current, " n.. year of the Freedom ", which takes for reference 1789. In the first weeks of use of the republican calendar, it is frequent that the officers of the civil-status do not mention the name of the month, but count per days of " decade ". The diffusion of this calendar, promoted by the participation of large artists, ran up however against the problems of the reduction of the days of rest which it implied thus that at the ancestral rate of the fairs and agricultural markets.

Philippe Chapelin

  Conversions and great dates of the republican calendar

YEARS: II (1793-1794) - III (1794-1795) - V (1796-1797) - VI (1797-1798) - VII (1798-1799)

YEAR: IV (1795-1796)

YEARS: VIII (1799-1800) - IX (1800-1801) - X (1801-1802) - XI (1802-1803) - XIII (1804-1805) - XIV (1805, until the 10 Nivôse)

YEAR: XII (1803-1804)

  The legislative texts to put into effect the calendar

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Philippe Chapelin - France