The year 2016 is a
leap year, which means we have an extra day in February.
In the Gregorian
calendar, each leap year has 366 days instead of the usual 365, by extending
February to 29 days rather than the more common 28.
According to Wikipedia, a leap year is a year
containing one additional day added to keep the calendar year synchronized with
the astronomical or seasonal year.
and astronomical events do not repeat in a whole number of days, calendars that
have the same number of days in each year drift over time with respect to the
event that the year is supposed to track.
By inserting an
additional day or month into the year, the drift can be corrected.
Earth takes about
a tropical year i.e. 365.242189 days – or 365 days, 5 hours, 48 minutes, and 45
seconds – to go around the Sun. Not having an extra day on February 29 nearly
every four years would result in a loss of almost six hours every year.
This means our
calendar would be off by about 24 days after only 100 years and leap day keeps
the calendar in alignment with the Earth's revolutions around the Sun.
algorithm from the Microsoft website
that tells you how to find if a year is a leap year:
1. If the year is evenly divisible by
4, go to step 2. Else, go to step 5.
2. If the year is evenly divisible by
100, go to step 3. Else, go to step 4.
3. If the year is evenly divisible by
400, go to step 4. Else, go to step 5.
4. The year is a leap year (it has 366
5. The year is not a leap year (it has
Some facts associated with leap
● Julius Caesar introduced the leap
year in 45 BC, but there was no February 29. Instead, February 24 was repeated.
● The frog is a symbol associated with
● "Leaplings" or
"Leapers" is what the people born on February 29 are called.
● February 29 also marks Rare Disease Day.
● People working on a fixed annual
wage work for free on this day.
● Your chance of being born on
February 29 is one in 1461.
Leap year being an
unusual occurrence has spawned its own genre of humour and satire. Here are
some to tickle your funny bone:
● “My 84-year-old friend is
celebrating his 21st birthday today. He has finally reached legally
● “I envy your only having to put up
with incessant Facebook wishes every 4 years.”
● And finally, “Leap year? You study
24x7x366 days now.”