In the Forgotten Realms, years (usually described as the passing of winters or summers) are referred to by names, each name consistent across the Realms. Each kingdom or city-state numbers years differently, usually to measure the reign of a dynasty or the current monarch, or since the founding of the country. The result is a hodgepodge of overlapping numbers that serve to confuse the ordinary person and frustrate the sage. The widespread differing year dates include the following:
Dalereckoning (DR): Dalereckoning is taken from the Year of Sunrise, when the Standing Stone was raised by the elves of Cormanthor and the human Dalesfolk. Since this time, humans were permitted by the Elven Court to settle in the more open regions of the forests. In some texts, primarily those which do not have direct ties to Dales history, Dalereckoning is called Freeman's Reckoning (FR). The calendar is widely used in Faerûn but has not spread beyond its shores. Dalereckoning is the most common year measurement and is used in all of the Forgotten Realms sourcebooks.
The current campaign date of the Forgotten Realms is 1375 DR—as of the real-world year of 2007.
Cormyr Reckoning (CR): Cormyr Reckoning begins at the foundation of House Obarskyr, the dynasty that still rules that land. The 25-year gap between Cormyr Reckoning and Dalereckoning has caused much of the confusion regarding elder days. Timelines and calendars of the period often use DR designators, but place the founding of Cormyr at 1 DR instead of 26 DR. This is understandable, given that the two reckonings are from two nearby parties and spread by a third (the merchants of Sembia), but it causes learned sages to slam their heads violently against their desks trying to figure things out.
Northreckoning (NR): Used in the City of Waterdeep, Northreckoning dates from the year Ahghairon became the first Lord of Waterdeep. A more archaic system called Waterdeep Years (WY) dates from the supposed first use of Waterdeep as a trading post. This reckoning is now largely abandoned except in ancient texts.
Mulhorand Calendar (MC): One of the oldest calendars in use in the Realms, this ancient scheme of record-keeping dates from the founding of Skuld, the City of Shadows, reputedly by a Mulhorandi god.
Present Reckoning (PR): In an attempt to get a handle on the various number systems in use, a new type of reckoning has been implemented with the approval of such worthies as Khelben "Blackstaff" Arunsun of Waterdeep and Vangerdahast of Cormyr and carried abroad by the Harpers. All year-dates trace back to the Time of Troubles as Year 0.
The Names of years
Every year has its own name in Dalereckoning. Year names are listed in Year Names in Dalereckoning.
Calendar of Harptos
There are 365 days in the year, split up into twelve months of thirty days each with five holidays that fall between some months. The names of the months are given in both the formal names and the common ones. The seasons run like they do for us; Hammer is like January and Flamerule is like July. Each week consists of ten days, called tendays.
|2||Alturiak||The Claw of Winter|
|3||Ches||The Claw of the Sunsets|
|4||Tarsakh||The Claw of the Storms|
|6||Kythorn||The Time of Flowers|
|12||Nightal||The Drawing Down|
The holidays are Midwinter, Greengrass, Midsummer, Highharvestide and The Feast of the Moon. Midwinter falls between Hammer and Alturiak, Greengrass between Tarsakh and Mirtul, Midsummer is between Flamerule and Eleasis, Highharvestide is between Elient and Marpenoth, and The Feast of the Moon is between Uktar and Nightal.
Every four years, another holiday called Shieldmeet is added as a leap day immediately following the Midsummer holiday.
- Timeline of Faerûn — Forgotten Realms timeline in Dalereckoning (DR)
- Greenwood, Ed, Sean K. Reynolds, and Rob Heinsoo. Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting. Renton, WA: Wizards of the Coast, 2001.